COVID-19 has changed the world of work forever by accelerating the shift to hybrid working – part of the time in the office, part of the time working remotely from home and maybe other times on the move. 

A global survey carried out by PwC in 2021 found that only 10% of respondents wanted to return to a traditional work environment. And almost three-quarters of respondents reported that they wanted a mix of face-to-face and remote working of differing degrees. 

The potential benefits of hybrid working include improved work-life balance, which our 2021 Employer Brand Research found to be the number one priority for New Zealand employees. This is a significant shift, overtaking salary and benefits as the top incentive for those looking to accept a job.

Alongside the empowerment to work how you want, remote and hybrid working also offer opportunities to embrace a global career while staying close to friends and family here in New Zealand. As a software engineer living in Auckland, for example, you could be working on a DeVOps project with colleagues in Silicon Valley, before heading up to Long Bay Beach to surf. Sure, technology made this kind of cross-continental collaboration possible before. But now, there is much greater cultural acceptance of people working how and where it suits them.

Professional, scientific, and technical services is just behind at 68%. This compares to 20% in healthcare, manufacturing, transport, or construction. So, when thinking about how to fit your job around your desired lifestyle, selecting the appropriate sector is clearly important.

But even within sectors there are differences; some employers offer more scope for hybrid/remote working than others and this may be a question you want to bring up at an interview or check out on a jobs rating site. For example, virtual consultations have opened up greater scope for flexibility and home working within healthcare. Similarly, shifts in construction and transport could be adjusted to allow for school drop-off and pick-up times.

Time spent with colleagues and managers is also especially critical when you first join. You want to get to know the people you work for. There is also a lot of informal mentoring and question-answering that is much easier when you are on-site together than working from home. 

Ultimately, work is a social as well as a professional activity. It’s good to have companionship. It’s good to feel like you belong. The same research that shows that people want to work remotely part of the time also reveals how much they prize this engagement. Only a fifth of job seekers says they want to work remotely all the time.

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Our consultants can provide more information about hybrid working and how to get the right work-life fit for you.

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