Employees eye return to work; health, career promotions among top concerns

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Despite growing concerns about the delta variant of the coronavirus, 96% of employees are making plans to return to the office in some capacity, according to a new report by Glassdoor. 

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About 66% of employees reported feeling eager to return after spending over a year in their makeshift home offices, according to Glassdoor's return-to-office survey. 

Many employees are looking forward to the days when they can reconnect with their company and colleagues. 

Over the course of the pandemic, about 27% of employees reported feeling less connected to their coworkers, while 26% felt far removed from their company’s culture, according to the data. About 31% were more likely to even quit their jobs. 

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About 43% of workers are eager to socialize with coworkers in person, while 35% are looking forward to being able to collaborate with colleagues in person once again. 

Others, however, may still need a little convincing – although free office perks are one way to get them back in the door, according to Glassdoor. 

Inside view of an office building with blurred motion (iStock / iStock)

For instance, about 38% admitted that they would be more likely to return if they could enjoy free food and refreshments. About 32% would consider returning if there was free transportation, and 28% would return if there were free massages offered. 

About 21% would be more likely to return if their office had alcoholic beverages available for either during or after work.

If employees continue to stay home, many fear it may hurt their chances of advancing in their careers. About 30%, in particular, felt that working from home on an ongoing basis would negatively impact their chances of getting a promotion. 

WHY WORKPLACE VACCINE MANDATES AREN’T WIDESPREAD — YET

Still, not everyone is 100% comfortable about shifting back to pre-pandemic times, especially as the delta variant continues to fuel infection surges. 

Citing new information about the variant’s ability to spread among vaccinated people, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) changed course Tuesday on some masking guidelines, recommending that even vaccinated people return to wearing masks indoors in parts of the U.S. 

To date, nearly nine in 10 employees, about 89%, are concerned about going back to the office. 

About 35% are worried about contracting the virus, while others are more concerned with new office protocols, such as knowing when to touch certain surfaces or how to safely interact with other employees.

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