The end of the traditional 9-5?

New study finds over 60 percent of Singaporeans skip the office to work elsewhere.

IWG reveals poll on flexible working attitudes – surveying over 18,000 professionals from a range of different industries across 96 countries

SINGAPORE – More than two-thirds of global employees work remotely every week, and over 50% do so for at least half of the week, heralding a major reassessment of the corporate real estate, according to a comprehensive new global study.

In Singapore, it was found that over 60% of employees work remotely every week, and almost 50% do so for at least half the week.

The emergence of this mobile workforce has been driven by technological change, globalization, and changes in employee expectations, according to IWG, the parent group of leading workspace companies including Regus and Spaces.

IWG has released a study based on the insights of over 18,000 business people across 96 companies. It found that every week 70% of employees are working at least one day a week somewhere other than the office. More than half (53%) work remotely for half of the week or
more, whilst more than one in 10 (11%) people work outside of their company’s main office location five times a week.

Allow your space to inspire. Picture: Getty

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The survey has also indicated that in Singapore, 63% of employees are working at least one day a week somewhere other than the office. Almost half (47%) work remotely for half of the week or more, whilst one in 10 (10%) people work outside of their company’s main office location five times a week.

Mark Dixon, founder, and CEO of IWG said: “People from Seattle to Singapore, London to Lagos no longer need to spend so much time in a particular office.

“We are entering the era of the mobile workforce and it is hugely exciting. Not just for individual employees, but for businesses too. This is a huge shift in the workspace landscape globally, and businesses are now looking closely at what this means for their corporate real estate

The study by IWG also found that Singapore businesses recognized that offering flexible working strategies to their employees provided them with significant benefits:

  • Business growth (92%)
  • Competitiveness (92%)
  • Productivity (82%)
  • Attracting and retaining top talent (81%)
  • Profit maximization (90%)

For generations, the world has understood office-based work to involve a fixed location and a 9-5 schedule. But an unprecedented number of businesses are now adopting a very different working model, which produces benefits for them and their workers.

The IWG survey found that flexible working not only reduces commuting time, but enhances productivity, staff retention, job satisfaction, and even creativity. This is in addition to the financial and strategic advantages that it brings for businesses

Creating a happier, more productive workforce in Singapore

The move to flexible workspaces reflects the changing demands and expectations of the workforce. 81% of those surveyed agree that flexible working helps them retain top talent whilst 65% are now offering this to help them recruit. Over half (58%) agreed that offering flexible working improves job satisfaction, demonstrating the need for businesses to provide working environments suited to today’s employees to maintain a first-class workforce.

The benefits businesses are experiencing are clear: a resounding 93% said that flexible workspaces enable employees to be more productive while on the move.

Ian Hallett, IWG Group Managing Director and Global Head of Brands and Ventures, said: “New technologies mean many of us can now work anytime, anywhere. The challenge for businesses is how to optimize this new landscape. Companies are realizing the benefits of flexible working and its ability to increase productivity, job satisfaction, and business performance.”

Everyone is demanding ‘on-demand’

The survey showed also that flexible working and the use of shared workspaces are no longer the preserve of start-ups. The world’s most successful businesses – including varied companies such as Etihad Airways, Diesel, GSK, Mastercard, Microsoft, Oracle, and Uber – are already adopting a flexible workspace approach.

Mr. Dixon added: “Changes in technology and digitalization have led to a growing use of on-demand services generally in business, with organizations of all sizes wanting to increasingly outsource non-core activities.

“Flexible working, supported by a professional on-demand workspace network, is now being discussed by senior leaders across functions in companies including risk management, business development, human resources, marketing, and strategy.

“One day soon, flexible working could simply be known as ‘working’. We are reaching the tipping point.”

Picture: IWG

Picture: IWG

Article contributed by International Workplace Group (IWG).