Financial services companies are ahead of the curve in offering employees workplace flexibility, according to a survey published Tuesday by Scoop, an entity that helps firms coordinate hybrid teams.
About 39% of the 300 financial services companies surveyed between October and February are either fully remote or let employees choose when or if they work from the office, Scoop found. That compares with 31% across the broader spectrum of 4,000 companies from several industries that responded to the survey.
Taken together, the survey labels the fully remote firms (7% of financial services respondents) and employee-choice firms (32%) as “fully flexible.” By contrast, 42% of financial services firms offered employees a structured hybrid schedule. Within that, 25% required employees to come in a minimum number of days, 10% had specific in-office days; 4% had both minimum and specific days; and 2% required employees in the office over a minimum percentage of time.
That means 20% of the financial services companies surveyed required employees to be on site full time. That’s a far lesser percentage than the 49% of companies across all surveyed industries that require full-time on-site work, Scoop found.
Flexibility varied regionally, by company size and by segment within financial services, according to the survey. For example, 18% of the 76 banks surveyed said they are fully flexible, while that percentage jumped to 78% for fintechs. Meanwhile, 33% of investment management and advisory companies said they are fully flexible.
Half of the banks surveyed said they offer structured hybrid work, while 32% require employees to be on site full time, Scoop found.
“I think over time they will lose talent to [banks] that are not fully on-site,” Rob Sadow, Scoop’s CEO, told Bloomberg. “If you are outlier in limiting flexibility, you will feel some talent outflow.”
By comparison, 17% of fintechs offer structured hybrid work, and 5% require employees to be on site full time. For investment management and advisory firms, those proportions are 54% and 13%, respectively, according to the survey.
By region, 61% of companies headquartered in the West said they are fully flexible. That compares with 34% in the South, 30% in the Midwest and 28% in the Northeast. Recognizing that many fintechs are clustered on the Pacific coast, Scoop ran the figures a second time without fintechs and found 46% of surveyed financial firms based in the West are fully flexible.
The structured hybrid model was most popular in the Northeast, with 52% of surveyed financial services companies offering that, compared with 47% in the Midwest, 40% in the South and 23% in the West.
Scoop found the on-site full-time model to be most popular in the South, with 26% of financial services companies from that region requiring that, compared with 23% for Midwest respondents, 20% in the Northeast and 16% in the West.
The survey found more than 70% of financial services companies with fewer than 250 employees are fully flexible, compared with nearly 30% of companies with more than 250.
About 22% of financial services companies with more than 250 employees were fully on site, compared with 14% of companies with fewer than 250, according to the survey.
Nearly half (49%) of financial services companies with more than 250 employees offer a structured hybrid schedule, compared with 14% of companies with fewer than 250.
Of companies requiring employees in the office on a minimum number of days, 56% required three days; 32% required two; 9% required one; and 3% required four, Scoop found.
Of companies requiring specific days, Tuesday was most popular, at 78%. Wednesday was next, with 73%; Thursday, 63%; Monday, 18%; and Friday, 5%, according to the survey.