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HR Execs Report That a Large Percentage of Their Workforces Will Work Remotely Indefinitely

PHILADELPHIA, PA, June 23, 2020 – In a survey of 111 senior Human Resources professionals, nearly 42% of HR leaders reported that up to one-half of their workforce will continue to work remotely indefinitely after the pandemic, five times more than were doing so before the COVID-19 crisis hit.

Salveson Stetson Group, a multi-specialty retained executive search firm in Philadelphia, recently conducted a survey covering a broad range of topics regarding the employment, work environment and talent impacts of the pandemic.

“The pandemic will have a long-lasting and transformational effect on how organizations interact with their employees well beyond the current crisis,” according to John Touey, Principal at Salveson Stetson Group. “Changes in work environment are only the tip of the iceberg. Communication, culture and collaboration will all fundamentally change, particularly for those organizations that did not support remote working arrangements prior to the health crisis.”

“While it’s no surprise that more people are working from home,” said Sally Stetson, Co-Founder and Principal of Salveson Stetson Group, “the survey shows just how dramatic the increase is.”

As communities reopen, more than 96% of HR leaders said they are developing or have begun implementing their organization’s plan for employees to return to the office, with more than 70% planning to bring employees back within 90 days. However, more than 21% of CHROs said they have not yet determined a time frame, and many indicate a phased approach for employees to return, depending on conditions in specific regions.

“We expect remote hiring, remote onboarding and remote working to become commonplace as we emerge from this public health emergency,” Stetson said.

More than 73% of executives say they have been working remotely since the pandemic began, which is more than 15 times the number who did so before the pandemic. However, companies appear to have been proactive and effective in managing the near term challenges of remote work. Of the respondents, 99% report that they have developed remote onboarding plans and more than 85% feel they have the tools necessary to support a largely remote workforce over an extended period of time.

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