One of the many ways in which habits have changed over the past year relates to work, with home offices, kitchen table workspaces, home schooling and endless “office” hours now the norm. As a result, many working people now see work from a new perspective.
Future Strategy Club (FSC) – a creative consulting agency that helps talented individuals take the first step towards consultancy work and self-employment – has commissioned nationally representative data using 2,076 UK residents, to find out what they now want from work.
Results show that more than half of the workforce (52%, or equivalent to 13.7 million if widened to the entire UK population) reported feeling closer to their family and enjoying a better work-life balance, after working at home for months and they are keen to continue to do so in some capacity.
Another 40% of those questioned (equivalent to 11.4 million people) say the pandemic has made them realise what a poor work-life balance they had before lockdown and they will not return to it after the threat of Covid-19 has been reduced. In addition, 60% believe the workplace of the future will have to change drastically for the better, to avoid losing its best talent to freelancing and consulting.
Of the parents questioned, 23% reported an employer unsympathetic to the needs of managing childcare around work and 34% of all questioned said the pandemic had encouraged them to look towards consultancy and freelance work, or start their own business.
CEO and Founder of Future Strategy Club, Justin Small, pictured, said: “Lockdown and the way that we see work has changed immeasurably and surprisingly quickly throughout the course of 2020. Working from home and flexible working was already growing in popularity but this year has put that growth on steroids. Covid-19 showed all the worst parts of the traditional working structure, so it is not surprising so many people have wanted to make changes to their environments permanently.
Companies need to be careful to accommodate their employees’ needs and concerns, otherwise talented individuals will be drawn towards going it alone or jumping ship, causing repercussions for businesses that may be on the edge of surviving and going under. If people are looking to go freelance, self-employed or become a full-time consultant, consultancy agencies are a great alternative to going it alone straight away. It wouldn’t be surprising if 2021 becomes the year of the mass exodus from the 9-5 and towards self-employment.”