Business leaders are split on whether working from home is more or less productive, but most plan to adopt hybrid arrangements as a result of the coronavirus crisis, new research suggests.
A survey of almost 600 company bosses found that around two in three intend to allow staff to work remotely on between one and four days a week.
One in five of those surveyed by the Institute of Directors (IoD) said they are not planning to introduce any form of remote working, while around one in 10 is now looking to work from home entirely.
Two in five of the business leaders polled said remote working is more productive, while almost as many feel it is less productive.
Joe Fitzsimons, of the IoD, said: “As the economy reopens, business leaders are grappling with the best working models.
“The flexibility of remote working has improved work-life balance for employees and cut down commuting expenses.
“In many cases it has also boosted inclusivity and hiring from different parts of the country.
“Despite the advantages, remote working has not been without its challenges.
“For business leaders, running a tight ship has not been easy without workforces in the same physical space. This is not helped by unreliable internet connections.
“Employee morale has also been affected, with the loss of office camaraderie, and adjusting to new roles has been difficult for new staff.
“Many firms are looking to cut back on office sizes, ramp up home-working and make more use of co-working spaces.
“After a year of mixed experiences with remote working, it seems many business leaders are taking a hybrid stance into the future.”