Companies across the San Francisco Bay Area are calling their employees back into the office as the pandemic wanes. Most are asking staff to show up in person a few days a week and allowing them to continue to work the other days at home in their pajamas.

On April 4, Google started requiring its employees to come into the office three times a week. Apple’s return-to-office plan went into effect on Monday, with employees initially returning to the campus at least once a week, then twice a week by the end of April and three days a week by May 23, KRON4 said

But how long will companies embrace the hybrid model?

Not long, a recent survey found.

More than half of managers recently surveyed by Good Hire agreed that a full-time return to the office would happen in the near future.

Good Hire, an employment background check company, surveyed 3,500 U.S. managers about their preferred working model — fully remote, hybrid or in-office — and found that 60% of managers agreed that a full-time return to the office was happening in the near future, a news release from the company said.

Managers shared three main concerns about not bringing employees back to the office full-time: employee’s lack of focus due to personal commitments at home, a struggle to foster company culture among at-home employees and productivity issues with remote workers. 

Nearly 70% of respondents “said they agreed or were neutral about experiencing burnout” from managing remote employees and preferred working with their team in the office.

Good Hire also found that 51% of managers thought their staff “wanted to return to the office full-time,” while 49% “were unsure or did not think employees wanted to return.” 

Perhaps the most telling finding in the survey — and one that’s getting shared across the internet — is that 77% of managers said they’d considering firing employees or cutting their pay for refusing to return to the office. 

How realistic is this number?

SFGATE asked an outside expert to chime in: “This number is a bit higher than I would expect (and indeed the number may be lower if one were to look at just Silicon Valley tech companies), but the finding is unfortunately not surprising,” said Stephanie Tignor, head of data science and insights at Humu, a Mountain View-based human resources tech startup. “We have data showing that managers’ jobs have become more difficult in the remote setting, and many of them are not adjusting well: Communication, listening, and feedback skills are on the decline among managers.”

While managers told Good Hire that they were concerned about their employees’ productivity at home, their survey responses indicated that remote employees get their work done during the pandemic. Of the respondents, 73% said their works’ productivity and engagement either improved or remained stable.  

Another thing to consider is that while companies may want their employees to return to the office, they may struggle to hire people who want the same thing. Companies may be forced to offer hybrid options in order to attract talent.

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