HomeRemote WorkLondon companies are allowing more employees to work from home

London companies are allowing more employees to work from home

Recent data from Hays Plc, a prominent recruitment firm, reveals a significant shift in the work patterns of London-based companies, indicating an increasing trend towards fully remote roles. This change is driven by a combination of high living costs in the capital and the attractiveness of London salaries without the associated commute.

Rise in fully remote jobs

According to the survey conducted by Hays Plc, the proportion of white-collar jobs in London that are entirely remote has increased from 18% to 22%. This adjustment places London on par with the East of England, making them the regions with the highest prevalence of fully remote working in the area. This transition is influenced by the ongoing demand to fill specialist roles, particularly in the tech and compliance sectors, where there is a smaller pool of candidates.

Recruitment challenges and solutions

Firms in London face significant challenges in recruiting for specialist positions due to the reluctance of job-seekers to relocate to the city amidst skyrocketing rent prices, even in outer boroughs. Lorraine Twist, a finance director at Hays, noted that companies are gradually shifting towards offering remote contracts when they struggle to fill positions with the traditional hybrid work model. This strategy is increasingly appealing to candidates who prefer to avoid the high costs of living in London while still earning a competitive salary.

Survey insights

The survey, which gathered responses from nearly 12,000 staff and employers between February 26 and March 18, underscores a broader struggle among companies and employees to balance in-person and remote work post-COVID pandemic. It reflects a labor market that remains tight, with companies vying for talent amid rising unemployment.

Political and economic implications

The Labour party, currently leading in the polls and expected to win the upcoming general election, has promised to establish flexible working as a right from the first day of employment. This pledge could further influence work patterns across England. Additionally, the Bank of England is closely monitoring hiring trends and wage growth as indicators of potential lingering inflation.

The shift towards remote work has led to a decrease in the proportion of London staff working entirely from the office, dropping from 28% to 25%. Likewise, hybrid roles have decreased slightly to 53%. This shift is affecting office landlords in the city, who are already grappling with the impacts of flexible working arrangements, weak economic conditions, and aging properties.


London’s adaptation to increased remote work represents a significant change in how companies and employees view work-life balance and productivity. As this trend continues, it will likely reshape not only the recruitment strategies and workplace cultures of companies but also the urban economy and commercial real estate market in London.