Could creatives be heading back into the office?
For many hybrid workers, flexibility has become a benefit they’re not prepared to part with.
While we’ve been more than happy to return to pre-pandemic behaviours when it comes to travel, socialising and shopping, work is a different matter.
In fact, since March 2020, the number of UK workers working from home on a fully remote or hybrid basis has increased dramatically. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the number of people who are engaged in hybrid work rose from 13% in February 2022 to 24% by May 2022.
The ONS also found that high earners are more likely to follow a hybrid working model, and a whopping 78% of those who work from home in some capacity believe being based at home for part of the week has led to an improved work-life balance.
Another 52% say it allows them to complete tasks quicker, and 53% shared that working from home is less distracting than being surrounded by colleagues in an office setting.
By this rationale, all companies should offer their workers a hybrid working model that sees employees work from home for the majority of the week, right? Not if you’re a creative at Disney.
Its CEO, Bob Iger has told hybrid employees that from 1st March they must return to the corporate office four days a week.
In an email to staff, Iger shared that connection and collaboration are behind his decision, and that virtual meetings aren’t as beneficial as in-person brainstorms.
“As you’ve heard me say many times, creativity is the heart and soul of who we are and what we do at Disney,” he wrote. “And in a creative business like ours, nothing can replace the ability to connect, observe, and create with peers that comes from being physically together, nor the opportunity to grow professionally by learning from leaders and mentors.”
Setting the precedent
‘Return to office’ orders are nothing new these days. In September 2022, Apple stipulated that workers must return to the office three days per week. While Elon Musk’s demands on Tesla and Twitter employees to return to their offices five days per week have been widely documented, but they are not widely welcomed by staff.
For many hybrid workers, especially those in creative roles who can justifiably do their jobs from home, flexibility has become a benefit they’re just not prepared to part with.
If your own employer is inching closer towards returning to the office full time, but you prefer a hybrid working model, moving jobs to a company with more flexible working options written into your contract is often the only alternative.
If this is the case, the Mediatel Job Board has hundreds of roles that can be done remotely, like the three below.
Senior Product Designer, ITV Jobs, London
ITV is currently looking for a Senior Product Designer to join its advanced advertising team. Reporting to the product design lead, you will work in a cross-functional product group whose mission is to create experiences that meet user needs and business goals.
Your tasks will include executing UX/UI work, leading design workshops with senior stakeholders, helping them understand how design solutions benefit users and the business, design system management and plan and conduct user testing sessions.
Proven experience in a consumer tech product design role, and an ability to demonstrate your impact on the product’s trajectory is essential. Candidates should also have proven experience of UCD design principles and research methodologies, with an ability to create user journeys, user flows, sitemaps, wireframes, Interactive prototypes, and final UI deliverables.
View more details about this opportunity here.
Digital Designer, Bauer Media Group, London
Bauer Media Group is seeking a Digital Designer for its digital team, a part of the Bauer Media Advertising team in London. The team is responsible for the delivery of all digital campaigns for some of the biggest clients in the UK including Sky, Disney, Wickes, Nandos and Tesco.
You’ll manage incoming briefs from concept to implementation, be involved in initial brainstorms, concept generation, creating the pitch and designing the final assets. You’ll need to be organised, able to manage multiple projects and be able to manage multiple internal stakeholders.
You will also be an expert in Adobe Photoshop and/or Illustrator, be proficient with HTML and CSS and be able to take designs from concept to creation. The ability to collaborate with other stakeholders to create a pitch document and campaign budget is required. See the full job description here.
Solutions Engineer, FreeWheel, London
The Solution Engineer acts as the key technical expert in the execution of FreeWheel’s strategic implementation projects, for some of the largest broadcasters including Channel4 and Sky in the UK, and advertising platforms across Europe. As such, you must communicate with customers and partners frequently to find clever solutions to complex problems, drawing upon your experience and creativity to ensure the success of FreeWheel’s most demanding client initiatives.
The successful candidate will be required to design and document business and technical solutions for client project execution, address incidents and client-wide difficulties, assist in implementations, and clarify appropriate resolution paths for new or undefined use cases and provide training to internal teams, and occasionally to clients and partners.