Are we making a move back to the office?

The year 2020 changed what typical working looked like – we all had to adapt to new ways of working. In that, a shift to remote/home working was ushered in and became the new normal for how we operated. However, as with anything new, it has had an impact on how we’re working. As we approach 2024, things are returning to the old normal – are we also making a move back to traditional office working? What impacts might that have on how we’re working?

Why would we make a move back to the office?

  • Collaboration – there’s no arguing that meeting and working in person leads to better collaborative efforts. Physically being in the same space as colleagues can lead to impromptu problem solving conversations. This can be hard to achieve online – especially if you’re having to wait around for a response from a colleague!
  • Company culture and team bonding – Culture and office relationships have a huge impact on job satisfaction and retention. Feeling that you have a strong support system and well developed relationships with colleagues can positively impact the quality of the work you produce, and your mental health. Regular office attendance also encourages social interactions that might otherwise be forced through team-building days or one-off social events like Christmas parties.
  • Training and development – Those that are in the early stages of their legal careers would benefit from being in the office. They will be able to gain valuable insights and training with more experienced colleagues. Undertaking training remotely can quickly get boring. Doing this in person provides more opportunities for varied and interesting training. Similarly, those seeking to develop their skills or careers may find this is more achievable in person. It is much easier to show willing or collaborate on a new project when you’re in the office!

Employers are still working out what works best for their firm. Many law firms have stuck with flexible or hybrid working for the time being – it is a great compromise that works well for both employers and employees. However, there does seem to be more emphasis on office attendance becoming more regular. Watch this space…

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