The pandemic looks set to have a lasting impact on Irish workplaces, with more than four in five employers expanding the flexible and hybrid working options they offer staff, according to CIPD Ireland.
The professional body for human resources practitioners said almost half of organisations – 46 per cent – were planning to increase hybrid working options, citing a study it carried out in conjunction with the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick.
Some 26 per cent intend to increase flexible working practices, while 12 per cent expect to offer the option of full remote working to their teams.
Two-thirds of organisations also say wellbeing is on the agenda of senior managers in their organisation.
Employers’ attitudes to remote working are likely to be influenced by a reported drop in absences when staff work from home.
CIPD Ireland director Mary Connaughton said organisations with a higher number of staff working remotely were recording a fall in absences, while those with a predominantly onsite workforce were seeing an increase.
“After Covid-19-related issues, the next most common cause of absence related to work-related stress and mental health. For this reason, our message is that effective interventions and culture change to address stress and mental health are of increasing importance,” Ms Connaughton said.
Almost 80 per cent of respondents said productivity had either increased or remained unchanged in 2021.
“It’s little wonder then, that confidence is growing among employers that remote, flexible or hybrid strategies can provide solutions that work for all levels of an organisation.”
CIPD Ireland held its annual conference in Dublin on Wednesday, with this the first time since 2019 that the event has been in-person.
CIPD chief executive Peter Cheese said it was "a time of change when we need to connect, learn from each other and step up with confidence to make a positive difference to the world of work".