August 9, 2021

Future of Work survey findings demonstrate continued interest in hybrid, remote work

Over the last two months, faculty, staff and graduate students have participated in multiple feedback opportunities, sharing information on how the University can best support its workforce. Through department meetings, the workplace experience survey and focus groups, employees have shared comments, concerns and ideas.

“Thank you to everyone who has taken the time this summer to provide feedback as part of the Future of Work project,” said Bill Bell, vice president for human resources. “Since the close of the workplace experience survey, we have been analyzing the results along with our partner JLL, a leader in workplace strategy and design.”

Over 3,500 staff, faculty and graduate students completed the survey — a 25% response rate total. Of those who participated, 79% identified as staff, 17% as faculty and 4% as graduate students. 

The majority of survey respondents see the benefits of and prefer a remote or hybrid work arrangement. More than half of the respondents indicated that they would like to spend 4-5 days per week working from home or come to campus as needs arise. Additionally, the majority of respondents believe they do not need to be in the office in order to be perceived as being productive by their manager.

“As you might expect, the survey found that the biggest benefits to remote work are increased flexibility with time and the time saved on commutes,” Bell said. “In addition to these positives, we also heard about opportunities for improvement, which we value just as highly.”

A number of respondents indicated that additional training on tools like Microsoft Teams would help with productivity. The University is partnering with Microsoft to offer a series of workshops on Microsoft Teams over the next two weeks. Additionally, employees can access a variety of Microsoft Teams training courses through LinkedIn Learning at any time. LinkedIn Learning training courses are free once employees log in and can be accessed through the OneCampus Portal.

A portion of respondents reported that they were unaware of the process available to take select Purdue property off campus to support remote work. Information on the process can be found in the Remote Work section of the Human Resources website.

The Future of Work Project Team and Executive Committee will use the information gathered from the various feedback opportunities to continue to move the project forward toward its outcome: a flexible, collaborative workplace strategy that supports current employees, attracts new employees and supports Purdue’s residential learning and research environments.

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