#HR Trends and Insights

Record-high numbers of workers return to offices

October 05, 2022

Is it time? Are we finally “there”? Nearly three years after the pandemic started, we’re seeing the most significant “return to office” shift yet. And while they may still seem low, they are likely underreported.

But industry experts like Ryan Anderson, Vice President of Global Research & Insights at MillerKnoll say the numbers aren’t really what we should be watching. Instead, he says companies should be “engaging employees in discussions about how the office can best evolve to support them and ensure that the path towards long-term value isn’t interrupted by short-term factors…”

So how can offices best support employees in their return to the office?

Supporting financial wellness

One way to support employees financially is by offering on-demand pay. With AnytimePay, employees don’t need to wait until payday to receive their wages. Instead, they can instantly add funds from their next paycheck to a prepaid card with the click of a button, giving them financial control.

Supporting physical wellness

Wellness plans are a type of health benefit that employers can build into compensation packages outside of typical health plans. They can be used for various goods and services, including athletic and camping equipment, entertainment, pet care, food and dining, continued education, and more.

Supporting mental wellness

The average American spends 250 hours a year commuting to work. That’s equal to 10 days just spent driving. Traffic jams, congestion, and the feeling that you’re wasting time on the road can impact stress levels.

Studies show that spending more than 20 minutes on a single commute can lead to chronic stress. This stress leads to increased levels of cortisol, which produces inflammatory chemicals and causes symptoms of depression and anxiety. It can also increase blood pressure and lead to fatigue and irritability.

To entice your employees to use public transportation, consider offering commuter benefits. These benefits allow employees to set aside money in their paychecks to pay for commuting costs. Those savings mean employees pay less in tax on those earnings. The current limit is $280 per month. They can spend the money on mass transit, qualified paid parking, or rideshares. The money is paid directly to a transit or parking vendor or set up on a voucher or debit card.

Getting back to the way things were

There are many benefits to being back in the office for both employers and employees. It makes communication more accessible and effective, team-building more manageable, and the overall culture is strengthened when people are together.

To ensure you’re ready to support your team as they return, schedule a call with our team today. 

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