Workers in the UK returned to their offices last week in numbers not seen since the start of the pandemic as vaccinations continued and restrictions reduced.
Office occupancy levels across the UK reached 40% between Tuesday and Thursday last week, hitting 45% on Wednesday, according to data from Metrikus. It is the highest level since it recorded 72% on March 12, 2020, before the government required people to work remotely.
Metrikus data relies on sensors installed in large office buildings in the UK’s largest city, which track daily entries.
The new numbers come as companies analyze how many people they want to return to the office and how to accommodate those who do as companies like PricewaterhouseCoopers and Standard Chartered start flexible business initiatives.
“The steady growth of the index appears to show that the gradual lifting of restrictions has slowly increased the desire of some workers to return to the office,” said Michael Grant, Director of Operations at Metrikus. “There is a great opportunity to increase efforts to understand the impact of the epidemic on work habits,” he said.
Employers will have to adapt to the strong preferences of workers on the days they prefer to go to the office, with Tuesdays and Wednesdays being the most popular options. On the other hand, companies may need to implement incentives for employees to commute to work on Fridays because this is consistently the least popular day of the week, Grant says.
Metrikus data confirm this preference. Last week, attendance fell to 32% on Friday, down a quarter from Thursday.
“Writer. Analyst. Avid travel maven. Devoted twitter guru. Unapologetic pop culture expert. General zombie enthusiast.”