A significant majority of Indian employees (81 per cent) believe that remote work hinders their career prospects, including opportunities for pay raises, bonuses, and promotions, reveals a new study by Unispace.
This sentiment was echoed by employers, with a staggering 96 per cent indicating that career limitations exist for those who are not physically present in the workplace.
Furthermore, the study revealed that Indian workers show a stronger preference for office-based work with 92 per cent of employees expecting to be in the office for at least four days a week in the near future, surpassing the global average.
According to the findings of the 'Returning for Good' report by Unispace Global Workplace Insights a lack of access to an office space is the main driver of job changes in India in the past two years. More than a quarter (28 per cent) of Indian workers have switched companies in the past two years due to a lack of access to office space in their previous employment.
The study compiled data from a comprehensive survey involving 9,500 employees and 6,650 business leaders across 17 countries, including 500 employees and 500 senior decision makers from companies with over 50 employees in India.
The survey also delves into the impact of the hybrid work model on India's workforce. 27 per cent of Indian employees consider their affinity for the office as a top reason for staying with their current employer, underscoring the significance they place on the physical workspace.
Interestingly, Indian employees demonstrate a higher willingness compared to their global counterparts to accept a pay reduction in exchange for the option to work from home. Nearly a third of respondents (31 per cent) have already taken a pay cut, almost double the global average of 16 per cent.
India stood out as the only country where a direct correlation between a lack of workspace and employee turnover rates was observed.
“Data from India clearly demonstrates that many employees prefer to work in an office, but too few employers are providing inspiring and purposeful spaces that meet employee needs and values, including the provision of private working areas,” said Abi Roni Mattom, Country Director, India at Unispace.
Employers on the other hand appear to misunderstand employees’ workplace challenges. ‘
According to the survey, businesses mistakenly believe that employees dislike going into the office due to reasons such as losing time for household chores, the inconvenience of carrying equipment between the office and home, and concerns about their mental well-being (all 22 per cent).
However, this perception does not align with the true concerns and preferences of the workforce. The top three reasons Indian employees dislike being in the office were enjoying the privacy of working from home (37per cent), feeling more productive working from home (27per cent) and feeling more effective in a quiet environment at home (26 per cent).
Globally, three in four companies surveyed (75 per cent) indicated that they have increased their real estate portfolio in the last two years, with companies across Asia Pacific indicating numbers even higher than this. This expansion includes revenue-generating trends such as creating hospitality spaces (44 per cent).