Recruitment specialist in HR, Sales and Operations

Will the pandemic change the “do I, don’t I work in London conundrum”?

It was very clear from our latest HR snapshot that most employers are looking to adopt some sort of hybrid / flexible working pattern after the pandemic.

I observe this with interest and wonder how this will affect job seekers decision making when it comes to a conundrum that was very prevalent before the pandemic.

You see previously, people had a decision to make. Did they suffer the commute into Central London from the outskirts of town or the home counties, to benefit from more opportunity and usually much higher salaries? Or did they focus on employment outside of London, closer to home, in the suburbs or home counties, where salaries were often a little less, but with the benefit of less commute time and more flexibility (usually, cultures were a little more relaxed and flexible)?

My sense is that this dynamic could potentially be disrupted. Most employers will welcome flexibility. Most individuals will now be able to consider that London commute, if it is only a requirement a few times a week.

In fact, that could now be a positive for London employers (another finding in our snapshot was that survey results were changing, people now actively wanted some time in the office, not full remote working). With the talk of potential part time season tickets coming too to accommodate this trend, it looks like city employment could be in the future even more appealing financially.

So there seems to be an opportunity here for your higher paying city-based employer. They may be able to attract a population that has previously been out of reach, because of commute and commitments. For businesses outside of London, could there be a risk? Will it now be harder to attract talent because the local nature of their role with all the perceived benefits of flexibility and reduced commute time have been eroded?

Maybe employers outside of the city may need to look at their packages again and look to compete with Central London salaries to attract the best.

I think it is an interesting dynamic and it is something that I talk about a lot right now with my client base.

Watch this space!

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