SURVEY SAYS: Return to Office

NewsDash readers share how rules about working in the office versus working remotely have changed.

Some companies are making final “return to office” plans after yo-yoing back and forth as the pandemic waned and then spiked again.

Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “Has your company’s “return to office” been finalized?” I also asked, “How have the rules about working in the office versus remotely changed?”

More than three-quarters (77%) of responding readers who in a plan sponsor role, 13% are or work for recordkeepers/TPAs/investment consultants, 7% are advisers/consultants and 3% are CPAs.

While 3% of respondents indicated that their company never transitioned to remote work during the pandemic, one-third reported their company’s “return to office” has not been finalized. Sixty-three percent said their company’s “return to office” has been finalized.

Ten percent of responding readers reported that the rules about working in the office versus working remotely have not changed for their companies from what they were before the pandemic, and the same percentage said their companies are continuing with full-time remote work. One-third of respondents said their firm now has a hybrid work environment where employees are required to work in the office some days and can work remotely other days. The remainder said they can now choose whether to work remotely full-time or in the office full-time or whether to adopt a hybrid schedule.

Some readers who chose to leave comments explained the new rules for working remotely versus in the office for their companies, and some expressed how they felt about it. One reader mentioned what a “nightmare” the situation has been for recruiters, while another shared what their company has learned since employees have been working remotely. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said, “After being given at least 5 ‘return to work’ dates, they finally just waived the white flag and said they had no idea when we’d go back, but they’d give us 30-day notice when it happens.”

A big thank you to all who participated in the survey!


We only have three employees working a hybrid schedule. Most of our employees never worked from home. Most of those that did, returned to the office more than a year ago.

The C-Suite is eager to have everyone back in the office and think everyone feels that way. If they only knew.

Our office is open to whoever wants to come in but only a handful come with regularly.

After being given at least 5 “return to work” dates, they finally just waived the white flag and said they had no idea when we’d go back, but they’d give us 30-day notice when it happens.

I feel the team is less close-knit with remote work. I have concerns over long-term consequences for knowledge transfer and maintaining culture in a remote workforce. I don’t even know people who I’ve theoretically worked with for 2 years now; if we were in the office, we’d have a working relationship.

Our company and offices never closed. We just trusted that everyone used common sense.

Offices are re-opening March 7 – yeah! Will initially be voluntary, then will have to choose between office-assigned, flex/hybrid (can reserve office), or remote.

I’m enjoying the working from home life way too much to go back to work. I have privacy, zero interruptions and don’t have to share my space with an individual who is sick, loud, or annoying…not sure where those positives come into play yet about going back in.

Recruiters’ nightmare! Our company was never remote friendly; we are now 3 in office/2 remote, but no one will commit to that beyond 2022. Fortune 300 company with not many candidates interested. SMH!!

Our rules are if you are a corporate employee, you must be fully vaccinated by 4/2/22 or you will be separated from the company!!

We are not only continuing working remotely, but we anticipate no longer having a physical headquarters building.

Some positions are offered the opportunity to be fully remote. Some positions are required to come back full-time. We do not offer a hybrid schedule.

My company has found that colleagues have been more productive and have a better work/life balance when in a virtual work arrangement. Starting March 1, we have the option to go back to the office, remain virtual, or have hybrid arrangement. It’s all very fluid.

We have been back in the office since June 2021. If an employee needs to work from home, the policy has always been to work with their manager to determine what schedule works best for the employee and company.

Sales & IT work remotely full time while admin positions work in the office on M, W & F and remotely T & Th.


NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not necessarily the stance of Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) or its affiliates.