There’s a new question for prospective employees. Beyond the job duties, salary, corporate culture, training and development opportunities, and potential for promotion, you’ll want to consider where you do your best work. This is an added dimension to your career discovery and your job interview preparation. The question is: Where do you do your best work?

You may need to balance many considerations when it comes to launching or continuing your career plans. Consider this. If you don’t want to work from home, but a big-name employer with a remote-only policy has a great opportunity and the right salary, what would you do?

Some very large and desirable employers are making surprising choices about where their employees spend their days. Based on the impressive productivity that work-from-home employees generated during COVID, plus positive employee feedback about not commuting and improved quality of life, some employers are staying remote even as the pandemic subsides. Among the A-list employers with a 100% work from home policy are Salesforce, Twitter, Spotify, SAP, Square, and Slack.

Some experts say most employers, including Verizon, Target, Siemens, and Microsoft are offering hybrid options (now called “dynamic options”), where most of their employees work from home during a significant portion of the work week. That means even if you decide to go into the office every day (or are assigned certain office days), many of your colleagues, including your boss, won’t be there when you are.

There are plenty of employers who are looking forward to resuming full-time, office-based workplaces where employees are all back together. Goldman Sachs, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook have expectations that all employees will return to the workplace. Of course, frontline workers in any organization will be in the workplace, including restaurant wait staff, retail sales representatives, warehouse workers, and many healthcare workers.

Your decision about where to work – and therefore, what company to work for – may be predicated on several variables. If you do best with close supervision or you are not comfortable with technology, your job search should be limited to organizations that are 100% committed to employees being in the workplace. That way, you are assured your colleagues, manager, and other team members are available for face-to-face interactions. You should still be prepared to use video conferencing for clients or global team meetings, as well as texting and emailing, because these remain fundamental communication tools.

Next Steps

  1. Assess if you can successfully self-manage and thrive in a hybrid or remote environment. If so, you may have more choices when it comes to employers and job openings.
  2. Craft some examples to prove you can be flexible when it comes to working in different environments and under dynamic circumstances, since plans for the workplace will continue to evolve for a while.
  3. Prepare for the job interview question, “How do you manage projects, teamwork, and deadlines in a remote or hybrid work environment?”
  4. Once you know your preference for remote, hybrid, or in-the-office, put more effort into searching for employers that match your preferred style.