Literally years after the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and forced businesses to impose large-scale work-from-home policies, many workers have continued to take advantage of them. A new study indicates that women remain especially enthusiastic about them.

This could have implications for how businesses ought to approach the subject of flexible working — especially if they are looking to attract male and female workers in largely equal numbers.

What does the new study indicate?

This study — titled Workforce Insights and conducted by YouGov — surveyed 4,000 US workers about how crucial it was for a business to let employees work from anywhere.

In the responses, 71% of women classed this as at least moderately important, while just 66% of men said likewise. Also, while a mere 12% of women said that being able to work from home was entirely unimportant, 16% of men concurred with this sentiment.

On the subject of whether it was very important for a business to offer flexibility in working hours, 57% of the female respondents expressed support, whereas just 44% of the men did so.

Should your business switch to hybrid working if it hasn’t already? insists that “your business should absolutely offer a hybrid work policy, and there are plenty of statistics beyond this study that prove it.” 

The site highlights one study where 32% of hiring managers reported increased productivity resulting from remote work policies. A separate study saw businesses seeing a 22% boost in performance when employees were permitted to work from home.

Even if your company’s current office would not be able to easily facilitate remote work, you could seriously consider taking up a flexible workspace designed for hybrid working.

One particularly strong incentive for you to make this change is that it could help you to close discrepancies between your male and female employees in how effectively they are able to juggle their corporate duties with responsibilities outside of work.

Why flexible working can be particularly helpful to women  

Advocates of remote working rights argue that one reason why women are drawn to working remotely is that they are responsible for most of the household duties. 

The 2020 Women in the Workplace report from McKinsey & Company and found that, in 2020, mothers were about 50% likelier than fathers to be spending an additional three or more hours a day on housework — the equivalent of 20 hours a week.

Worse, the 2021 Women in the Workplace report indicated 42% of women reporting often or almost always being burned out in 2021. This is noticeably higher than not only the 35% of men who reported the same but also the 32% of women who said likewise in the 2020 report.

“This is really an alarm bell that [organisations] need to continue to really focus on women, and make sure they’re getting the support they need,” CEO Rachel Thomas has remarked as quoted by CNBC. Your business could provide much of that support simply by leaving remote working as an option for female employees.