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American office workers are demanding more flexible working conditions 

American office workers are demanding more flexible working conditions 

North AmericaResearchWorkforce Management

New research has revealed that almost half (49%) of American office workers aged between 25-34 – commonly referred to as Generation Y – are ready to walk away from their job and look for new opportunities if flexibility is not provided by their employer. 

It is surprising then that more than half of US businesses (61%) are insisting that their employees return to the office, at least on a part-time basis.  

This decision has not been well received – upsetting a quarter of Generation Y employees (25%), making them 75% more likely to look for another job if they don’t get the flexibility they want. 

It’s not just the younger generation that want more flexible working. Independent research has shown that over a third of American office workers (39%) are ready to quit if their employer doesn’t offer flexible working and one in five (21%) are not happy that their employer is insisting they return to the office.  

These figures should raise alarm bells for US businesses already scrambling to avoid the cost and disruption associated with staff turnover. Companies have experienced a huge spike in job moves in recent months, and  almost seven in every 10 US employees (66%) say they feel more confident about their decision to move to a new job than they did in the previous year. 

“America is declaring it’s time to go back to the office,” said Anthony Lamoureux, CEO of Velocity Smart Technology. “But our research shows this approach could be fatal for business. Employees don’t just expect flexible working, they are now actively making career changes to better suit their commitments outside of work. Whether that is flexible hours, locations or a mixture of both. Employees that are not offered the chance for flexible, remote or asynchronous working will walk – straight into another job.” 

Indeed, results show that US workers are happier with the ‘new normal’ and a more flexible way of working with over a third (36%) insisting their mental health has improved since being allowed more flexible working. 

These results are part of an independent research report called Changing behaviours of a flexible workforce in 2022 and beyond research – commissioned by Velocity Smart Technology. The research investigated how US offices will change in 2022 and how business leaders can support more diverse and asynchronous working practices to keep pace with competition and retain employees. 

“Employees have rediscovered the joys of taking time to be outside during the working day, from walking the lock-down dog to managing side jobs, substantial numbers of individuals now recognise the nonsensical nature of the old nine to five,” added Lamoureux. “It now needs to become an essential part of recruitment and retention strategies for businesses to firm up flexible employment models – or else, they may be left without an office to fill.” 

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