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Workers have mixed views on employers’ response to the pandemic 

Workers have mixed views on employers’ response to the pandemic 

North AmericaResearch

A new national survey of working Americans gives a mixed report card for how employers are navigating through COVID-19 as the pandemic enters its third year. On one hand, employees say employers have made substantial improvements when it comes to flexibility (66%) and remote work (57%). Yet, employee confidence in their organisation’s leadership and culture have dropped since the early days of the pandemic. 

This new Eagle Hill Consulting national survey finds that only 29% of US employees say that their organisation has trusted leaders and managers to navigate the COVID-19 crisis, down from 32% in 2020. Few workers (20%) say that their organisation has a culture that fosters innovation and collaboration to deal with this global pandemic, down from 24% in 2020. 

This workforce sentiment comes as the country continues to battle Omicron variants and as employers continue to face acute labour shortages due to factors like the Great Resignation and employees out sick or facing long COVID. 

The  2022 Eagle Hill Consulting COVID-19 Workplace Survey  measures employee sentiment on a multitude of pandemic issues, conducted by Ipsos in January 2022 among 1001 employees across the US. It follows the 2020 Eagle Hill Consulting COVID-19 Workplace Impact Survey, conducted by Ipsos in March 2020, that included 1,032 US employees. 

When asked about employer improvements in response to the pandemic, employees reported the following: 

  • Over half (66%) say employee flexibilityhas improved, with Millennials agreeing at a higher level (70%) 
  • More than half (57%) say that remote work has improved 
  • Half (50%) say there have been improvements in innovation and productivity. 
  • Only 46% agree employee satisfaction has improved. 
  • Less than half (42%) agree that there have been improvements to the organisation’s culture 

“The pandemic forced employers to pivot their business and workforce strategies almost overnight and some of those changes are resonating well with employees,” said Melissa Jezior, President and Chief Executive Officer, Eagle Hill Consulting. “For example, employees long have been advocating for more flexibility and remote work and the pandemic forced the issue for employers. But even with some improvements, employees still have low confidence in organisational leadership and culture. These are difficult issues to address, without quick fixes and they require rebuilding trust and improving employee engagement. Employers are wise to build on the positive changes implemented during the pandemic to set the stage for addressing any trust, confidence, leadership and culture concerns across an organisation.” 

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