Microsoft’s Work Trend Index highlights a growing disconnect over hybrid work

Microsoft’s second annual Work Trend Index report has highlighted a growing disconnect between employer and employee attitudes to hybrid work, according to a survey of 31,000 people in 31 countries and analysis of user data from Microsoft 365 and LinkedIn.

Microsoft found that 50% of leaders say their companies are planning a return to full time in-person work in the year ahead, even though a majority of employees prefer the flexibility of remote and hybrid work.

A small majority of managers (54%) did acknowledge that the leadership at their companies is out of touch with employee expectations, with 74% of managers saying they don’t have the influence or resources to drive change for their teams. And 43% of leaders say building relationships is their greatest challenge as a result of having employees work in a hybrid or remote environment.

“The challenge ahead for every business leader is understanding the misalignment and trying to figure out how they can align what employees expect and are going to demand, with the pressure they’re going to have to drive business results in this very difficult environment,” Jared Spataro, corporate vice president for modern work at Microsoft told reporters during a briefing earlier this week.

The report also found that 38% of hybrid employees say their biggest challenge is knowing when and why to come into the office, yet only 28% of leaders have laid out team agreements to define these new norms.

The report, titled Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work, Work, identifies five key work trends that have emerged since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic:

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

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