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EY survey: Employees in PH, SEA countries want flexible work to stay post-COVID-19

By Hannah Mallorca Published Jul 20, 2021 5:34 pm

Majority of employees in Southeast Asian countries are willing to resign if not provided work flexibility post-COVID-19, a survey from Ernst and Young (EY) revealed.

The EY 2021 Work Reimagined Employee Survey—conducted in March 2021—covered 16,264 employees in 16 countries, including 1,037 respondents from the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. 

According to the survey, majority of employees in Southeast Asia would prefer to work in flexible arrangements than in an office setup. The respondents said they would prefer to work anywhere (32%), remotely (29%), or in a hybrid working arrangement (23%)

Only 15% of employees said they would prefer to return to the office full time.

Meanwhile, 60% of the respondents would consider leaving their jobs if not provided work flexibility by their companies. 

Even if the majority are willing to resign for more flexible working arrangements, 78% of the respondents said they are satisfied with their jobs while 91% plan to stay in their current jobs for the next 12 months. 

EY ASEAN people advisory services leader Tan Lay Keng said employers who promote flexible work arrangements are most likely to have better employee retention and satisfaction in the long run. 

“Employees surveyed saw employers taking steps to enable them to work productively and to better manage their workload in this new hybrid environment. By investing in collaboration technology, providing employee benefits that support home office setup, and building a strong teaming culture, these employers are likely to be more successful in this new normal,” Tan added.

Lisa Escaler, workforce advisory leader for SGV, a Philippine member firm of EY, said it is crucial for employers to understand the changes in workforce models and behavior that are brought by the new normal. 

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