Tui told employees to stay in the office for only one day a month during the Covid shift
Tui, the UK’s largest travel company, told its employees that they only need to stay in the office for one day a month. This is the latest sign of a fundamental shift in the way the work is caused by the pandemic.
The company said on Wednesday that as it shifts to a permanent, flexible way of working, it will provide employees with “complete flexibility.” “Work is what we are going to do, not where we are going,” Tui said.
Next week, the British government will remove the requirement that workers stay at home as much as possible and replace it with a recommendation to gradually return to the workplace.
But many companies have discovered during the pandemic that working from home or a mixed arrangement between home and office is more suitable for employees and operations, leading to permanent changes in the way millions of people in the UK work.
KPMG provides its employees with a “four-day, two-week” mixed work plan. The Lloyds Banking Group is developing a strategy to include family, hub or mixed work as a new “work style category” for its employees.
According to the plan, Nationwide has closed three offices in Swindon to allow its employees to choose between their homes, offices or local branches.
Accenture surveyed more than 1,400 British financial services employees in the banking, capital markets and insurance industries and found that two-thirds would prefer to work only two days a week or less in the office. Less than one in ten would agree to return to the office for five days a week.
Tui has more than 10,000 employees, but the new flexible approach does not apply to certain employees, such as pilots, crew members, engineering and maintenance personnel, or employees in retail stores. The company is considering implementing similar plans in its European operations.
The move also means that the company will review its real estate portfolio, although Tui said that given the need for collaboration and meeting space, there is no plan to change in the short term.
The German-based group has been struggling during the Covid-19 crisis, and for most of the past 18 months, most of the travel markets have actually been closed, thus incurring significant losses.
Since the pandemic began in March last year, most of Tui’s office employees in the UK have worked from home.
According to Andrew Flintham, Managing Director of Tui UK, “The pandemic has allowed us as an organization to take a step back and make necessary changes to the way we work, communicate and collaborate.”