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U.K. Workers Value Flexibility Over Pay Raises

Global research from Morgan McKinley finds that 93% of British respondents express a strong preference for continuing hybrid and remote work despite efforts to bring employees back to the office.

By Maggie Mancini

Morgan McKinley’s Global Workplace Study finds that professionals around the world are becoming more discerning when it comes to advancing their careers and many are walking away from opportunities if their needs are not met.  

Four years after the pandemic, the British workforce is still debating the merits and downfalls of hybrid work patterns. In fact, 93% of respondents in the U.K. express a strong preference for continuing in hybrid or remote work. Global professionals in hybrid work models express the highest contentment with their work patterns, and 51% would pass on pay raises to keep their flexibility.  

In the U.K., one or two days in the office is favoured by 52% of professionals, with a further 22% selecting three or four days in the office. Only 3% are happy to be in the office for five days. Despite employee preferences, 56% of companies globally—and 60% of those in the U.K.—are urging staff to increase their in-office presence.  

The survey finds regional differences from companies mandating for employees to return to the office with Hong Kong (91%), Australia (65%), Japan (62%), Singapore (61%), and China (59%) with the highest rates of RTO mandates. This is compared to 40% in the U.K., 40% in Canada, and 42% in Ireland.   

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