A Roundup of 6 Office Culture Trends in 2022

As we put 2022 in the rear-view mirror and begin to look ahead at 2023, it’s important to focus on the office culture trends we saw rise to the surface.

One thing was consistent throughout this past year—there’s an ever-growing importance placed on building an efficient, engaged corporate culture. A positive business culture not only helps companies stand out from others, it also gives them a competitive edge, allowing them to attract and retain great talent that provides long-term value.

While every business has a unique company culture, there are some common threads in the most successful businesses and brands around the world. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the key office culture trends we saw in 2022, as well as what to expect in the new year.

1. Employee engagement remains paramount

It’s no secret that employees perform better when they have a vested interest in the company they work for. A sense of connection to their company and work is important to employee engagement, and a great way to foster that is by creating an employee-centric work culture. It’s been a prevailing trend in 2022 and is likely to gain even more momentum in the coming year.

Fostering engagement comes down to creating a culture that people enjoy and are proud of, and that encourages them to participate. For many companies, this means creating a space where every employee is free to be themselves. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) is a big part of this, and flexible work models continue to play a role in accommodating all people and all lifestyles.

2. A growing mind for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Speaking of DE&I, today’s companies need to have a social focus. Not only are customers looking to support ethical, diverse brands, employees are prioritizing it, too. One of the most important and meaningful office culture trends of 2022—and, undoubtedly, beyond—is promoting equity and inclusion in the workplace.

Equality is about much more than doing away with biases. It’s about valuing diverse perspectives; promoting mutual respect and improving bonding and morale. By fostering employees’ sense of belonging and fairness, you bolster your reputation and portray your company culture as employee-centric.

3. Flex and hybrid work schedules are the new norm

Companies are truly embracing the intrinsic link between employee productivity and work-life balance, and they’re realizing that hectic schedules only lead to poor performance and burnout. Today’s professionals are looking for flexibility in the workplace, whether that means a full-time work-from-home option or a hybrid one. Many employers are implementing flex schedules, with some time spent in the office—in whatever form that may take—and the rest at home.

Flex work is preferred by most professionals. Implement a flex schedule and watch your employees exhibit higher job satisfaction and greater productivity. It all leads to higher employee retention and a workforce that’s happier to clock in and get the job done.

4. Total rewards benefits are coming into focus

Every company that cares about its employees understands the importance of benefits, but how effective and meaningful are the ones your organization offers? The right benefits encourage loyalty and can help you attract the right talent.

Today’s benefits packages need to go beyond the basics, helping employees grow in their career while pursuing a vibrant personal life. Total Rewards plans are constantly evolving to reflect this, and they’re made up of a growing list of benefits:

  • Health benefits

  • Paid time off (PTO)

  • 401k or other retirement plan

  • Mental health support

  • Student loan assistance

  • Flex work opportunities

Total rewards represent a shift toward creating work-life balance. Instead of simply paying a higher salary, companies are incentivized to create benefits packages that support a well-rounded scope of factors that employees need, want and value.

5. Employee experience factors into performance

Running a business is about more than just making a profit. A company needs to take care of its most valuable assets: its employees. After all, a company is only as successful as its workforce is. The everyday employee experience is important—it affects productivity and company loyalty. By focusing on the employee experience, you can increase employee engagement and create a workforce that wants to work for you.

Employee experience isn’t based on any one single factor. It encompasses everything from how a company is managed and run, to how employees are supported and enabled in their job, to the mission and values of the organization, and beyond. Companies need to take a top-down look at employee experience and make sure it aligns with employee expectations.

6. Upskilling, development and education are coveted

Young professionals just getting their start in the business world are looking for more than just a job with great benefits—they’re looking for a career they can grow into, with constant opportunities to learn along the way. One of the best ways to think out of the box—and attract and retain a new generation of employees—is to provide the tools and opportunities for continued training and development.

If you don’t have a developmental program in place—or your current one could use an update—consider business goals, talk to employees, and review relevant training and development opportunities. With more training and development, your employees will expand their skill set with the tools they need to help your business move forward.

What office culture trends will 2023 bring with it?

From increased emphasis on employee wellbeing to a focus on engagement among virtual, hybrid and in-person work, many of the trends of 2022 are set to roll into the new year. Moreover, other trends are emerging that will shape how 2023 will feel for the workforce as employers and employees alike reconsider their expectations.

Will companies take a hardline stance on remote work or lean into a flex work model? Will workforce downsizing pave the way to better Total Rewards that improve talent retention? Will DE&I lead to more inclusive hiring and promotion practices that diversify company culture even further?

While it’s impossible to tell the future, there are good indicators that 2023 will be a year of realignment for many organizations. It’s shaping up to be the next step forward in a bright new future of work.

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