Retention Trends in 2023 for Remote Workers

Discover why you need to offer remote work options if you want to attract the top talent in 2023

February 1, 2023
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The Covid pandemic proved the majority of knowledge workers can work from home without any problems.

But is remote work here to stay, or will 2023 spell the start of “the great return”?

Read on for a prediction of this year’s big remote work trends – and four simple tips for retaining your remote workers.

Will remote work continue in 2023?

All the latest data suggests remote work is here to stay.

In fact, It’s expected that 25% of workers will be working remotely by the end of 2023.

That’s reflecting in the fact 9.8% of job searches made on Indeed in September 2022 mentioned remote work. That’s a steep rise from the 1.7% of searches mentioning it in September 2019.

Plus, the number of Google searches for ‘remote jobs’ has unsurprisingly been on the rise since the Covid pandemic. That reached it’s all-time peak in January 2023, suggesting people are more open than ever to remote work:

What are workplace trends for 2023?

Of course, remote work trends aren’t happening in a vacuum.

Here’s how the early data suggests the overall US job market is going to shape up in 2023 – and how you can expect that to impact your organization.

Experts are predicting a recession

Economists have put the chances of a recession at 61%. So, according to the exports, it’s more likely than not that we’ll be seeing some big changes to the job market. How that will shake up the role of remote working is yet to be seen.

Unemployment is set to rise (and wage growth slow down)

The unemployment rate is predicted to jump from 3.7% to 4.6%, while the wages of Indeed job listings grew 3.3% less year-over-year in December 2022 than in March 2022. A slowing job market suggests workers will be a bit slower to pull the trigger on leaving their job than they were in 2022.

The Great Resignation is showing no sign of slowing down

Despite a looming recession, rising unemployment, and stagnating wages, the “Great Resignation” is showing no sign of slowing down. In fact:

  • 3% of private sector workers quit their job in November 2022 – 16% higher than the 2019 average.
  • 95% of American workers feel confident about their career prospects in 2023. 
  • A massive 61% of workers are thinking about quitting this year.

So while voluntary turnover might slow down this year – especially if we’re plunged into a recession – you shouldn’t expect it to return to pre-Covid levels.

Try Assembly to get all the tools you need to track your employee turnover rate – and launch a strategy to improve it.

Does remote work increase employee retention?

No matter what happens to the job market this year, one thing is for sure: companies that offer remote working options will increase employee retention

Don’t believe us?

Did you know:

  • 79% of participants in one research study said they would be more loyal if an employer allowed for a more flexible setup?
  • 71% of employees open to looking for a job aren’t happy with how flexible their current organization is willing to be?
  • 56% of remote workers would look for a new job if their company asked them to return to the office?

The writing is on the wall: embrace telework or prepare to lose your top talent to companies that have.

How to retain remote workers

Introducing a remote work policy isn’t an instant cure for a high turnover. If you’re not thoughtful and deliberate about creating a remote company culture then it could actually backfire.

Stick to these tips to retain your remote workers and keep them engaged and productive:

Give remote employees a voice 

If you’re not careful, your remote employees can feel like they have less of a voice than their teammates who work from the office. 

But just because a teammate works from home doesn’t mean they’re any less interested in having their say on how your company operates. Keeping them at arm’s length from those discussions is bound to alienate them and might leave them looking for another job.

It’s therefore crucial that organizations with a hybrid workforce run regular employee pulse surveys , check in with their people during one-to-ones. and provide an opportunity for the anonymous feedback.

If they don’t have these channels to express themselves through, it can be easy for your remote employees to feel like they don’t have a voice. And this can have a huge impact on how long they stay employees.

Book a demo of Assembly today to get access to all the tools you need to empower your remote employees with a voice in one place.

Keep a close eye on engagement

Engaged employees are a lot more likely to stick around than unengaged ones. In fact, over a third of disengaged employees are actively applying to new jobs compared to just 5% of engaged ones.

However, it’s much harder to get a feel for how engaged your team is in their work when they’re working from home. It’s therefore even more important for remote team leaders to make it a habit of having open and honest conversations with their reports about how they’re feeling. The best way to do this? Asking the right questions during one-to-ones.

Not being able to unplug

One thing you need to be particularly mindful of is making sure your remote employees don’t feel like they always need to be available.

When your people are working from their dining room, the divide between their home and work life becomes a lot more blurred. This can easily lead to remote employees working longer and checking email more often. In fact, remote employees work 10% longer than their office counterparts, or about four hours more each week.

Which sounds like a pretty good deal on the face of it… until you consider that 69% of remote employees have experienced burnout while working from home.

To prevent your remote teammates from burning themselves out, make it clear to them that they should mute notifications and stop checking their email once their workday is done. Fail to do so and your retention rates could seriously suffer – not to mention your engagement levels.

Try Assembly to get the tools you need to easily track and improve burnout levels across your business.

Look out for presenteeism

Presenteeism – when an employee continues to work when they’re unwell – is a rife with remote workers. In fact, a massive 70% of remote employees worked while they were ill during the pandemic. 

And you can understand why: when they’re working remotely, your teammates might think it’s harder to “prove” they’re ill, so end up working through it. 

That might sound great for business at first glance. But an ill employee is almost certainly not getting much quality work done. In fact, the latest American Productivity Audit calculated presenteeism costs the US economy $225 billion every year.

Productivity across your business will get a boost – and burnout levels are bound to fall – if you encourage your people to take time off to recover rather than forcing themselves to work while they’re sick. Of course, like all aspects of your company culture, this is only going to stick if you lead by example and take time off when you need it, too. 

The final word

While you’re going to need to offer remote work options if you want to attract the top talent in 2023, it’s not a silver bullet. Stick to the tips we’ve laid out here to solve the employee retention challenge in the age of remote working.

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