Survey: Majority of Companies Plan to Continue with Remote Work

Reflecting the results of similar pandemic-related polling throughout the country, a new executive survey from New York-based IPA 100 firm EisnerAmper (FY20 net revenue of $420.1 million) found that 60% of respondents will let staff continue to work remotely – even after widespread application of a coronavirus vaccine.

The firm’s Dec. 2 survey of 273 business owners, C-suite professionals, family office executives and high-net-worth attendees of its virtual national business summit further revealed that only 8% do not plan to let employees continue to work virtually and 32% are undecided. Having found success with an expanded virtual work platform, 55% of respondents are more likely to increase the hiring of contractors or out-of-state employees. Even with more remote work, however, 50% of survey participants will not be downsizing or may even add space, while 21% will downsize to some degree and 29% are unsure.

In terms of how the pandemic and work-from-home pivots have affected salary and benefits at their companies, 23% of respondents expect to utilize a new type of salary structure, 44% expect their salary structure to remain the same and 33% are undecided. Forty percent of employers have not added mental health benefits during the pandemic, but 16% have. Also, 59% of respondents have not or do not plan to add benefits for work-from-home parents with children who are remote learning, but 12% have added such benefits.

From an operational standpoint, 70% of respondents said productivity either increased or stayed the same in a virtual work setting, while 14% saw decreased production. The biggest challenge of managing a virtual workforce was a lack of team building for 54% of respondents, while technology challenges were ranked a distant second at 18%. Looking ahead, companies plan to make investments in tech (63%), staffing (43%) and training (34%) over the coming year.

“Our annual summit continues to provide a wealth of helpful data on what business executives are thinking and feeling, along with the corresponding trends,” says EisnerAmper CEO Charly Weinstein. “As we start to see the light at the end of the tunnel regarding the pandemic, it’s clear that many companies will combine the practices of their ‘old normal’ with business practices of the ‘new normal.’ ”

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