We travel and go to restaurants. Why do some people not return to the office?
Kastle Building Protection Company in Falls Church, Virginia, tracks how many people are in office buildings in the District of Columbia counting building entry cards and keychains, and that’s still only 32.3%.
The average in the 10 largest cities he tracked is 36.4%.
However, we drive and drive again almost normally.
Kastle Systems added new data points to it weekly employment barometer compare where people are willing to go.
Attendance at NBA games is 93.1% of pre-pandemic levels. OpenTable bookings in restaurants are 84%. TSA checkpoints at airports are at 82.7%. Even cinemas are busier than offices.
“The data there confirms that it is very convenient for people to come back together. And they do. They just don’t do it in the office, ”said Mark Ein, chairman of Kastle Systems.
“I think it tells us that a slower return to the office is no longer just about health and safety, or maybe it’s not about health and safety,” Ein said.
Ein said there is a good argument that the office may be the safest environment for people to gather again, although he acknowledges that there is a difference between staying in the office eight hours a day, five days a week and visiting a restaurant for a couple of hours from time to time.
But when Omicron goes out, the reluctance to return to the office is probably due more to continuing to work well at home or perhaps leaving it as long as possible. The lifestyle has also changed significantly over the last 18 months.
“These are really new rhythms, patterns and habits that people have developed while working at home over the last couple of years. People liked to work like that and they expressed a desire, and so far these patterns have taken root, ”Ein said.
Ein is one of those professionals thinking that, generally speaking, face-to-face is better for office staff; it’s hard to sell what employers decide.
“When we talk to customers, we start to see people rethinking ‘how to set up an office of the future,’ and I think you’ll see some interesting things that once people start coming back, they’ll realize they missed it,” he said. Ein.
Get the latest news and daily headlines to your inbox by signing up here.
© 2022 WTOP. All rights reserved. This website is not intended for users in the European Economic Area.