Although working from home has become increasingly popular among employees in recent years, early-career workers are less likely to prefer it, according to a March 28 report from Glassdoor’s economic research team.
Entry-level workers had the lowest work-from-home rating — at 4.3 out of 5 — as compared with mid-senior workers (4.6), director-level roles (4.6), and executive roles (4.7).
“Remote work environments can bring challenges to fostering an engaging company culture, particularly for employees early in their careers,” wrote Richard Johnson, an associate economist and data scientist at Glassdoor.
“Entry-level workers, who tend to be earlier in their professional careers, may have a difficult time establishing a solid footing in new organizations and remote work doesn’t appear to be helping,” he wrote.
In general, the research team found, entry-level workers also had lower overall workplace satisfaction. When they looked at the gap between the overall ratings and work-from-home ratings, mid-senior positions appeared to be “more distinctly satisfied” with working from home.
The findings line up with previous Glassdoor research that found interns are more likely to discuss remote work more negatively than full-time peers, Johnson wrote. Remote work may negatively impact interns and entry-level workers due to challenges with communication and connection.
“There is clearly still work to be done to ensure that entry-level employees are able to find the full support, resources, and opportunities they need to be as satisfied as their more-experienced peers with remote work,” he wrote.
Across all positions, though, working from home was among the top three benefits for 68% of employers on Glassdoor that offered the benefit in 2022. Vacation and paid time off took the top spot, followed by health insurance. Employees noted several positive aspects of their work-from-home experience, including schedule flexibility, productivity, time spent with loved ones, fewer commuting hours, and less microaggression in the workplace.
By occupation, employees in technical sales and support gave the highest ratings for remote work (4.9), followed by business development roles (4.8) and attorneys (4.8).
The research team also looked at the differences between the ratings for remote work and overall work experience. They found that social workers had the largest gap, which may indicate a higher satisfaction with working from home. Customer service representatives, branch managers, management consultants, account executives and underwriters were among the top occupations most satisfied with working from home. They all had a rating of 4.6 or higher for remote work, as well as a higher work-from-home rating than overall work experience rating.
“What’s consistent between all occupations with remote work access is the high satisfaction rating for the work-from-home benefit for 2022,” Johnson wrote. “Overall, companies pulling back on workplace flexibility or simply increasing in-person days indiscriminately are at risk of seeing their employees’ valuable talents being applied elsewhere.”
Remote and hybrid work arrangements will likely continue to serve as an effective retention and recruitment tool, according to recent data shared with HR Dive. Even still, HR professionals and company leaders should account for employee needs and preferences based on occupation, job level and concerns about productivity.