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New Survey Findings: Work Location Flexibility is Key for Employee Recruitment & Retention But Companies Need To Address Critical Compliance Risks

SAN FRANCISCO (September 21, 2023)—Topia launches the findings of its latest research into employee and employer trends and attitudes relating to remote work, global talent mobility, and business travel.

Today, Topia released the 2023 study, “Adapt to the new realities of your distributed workforce” which finds that employees and HR professionals agree – flexible work location arrangements are key to recruiting and retaining employees. 91% of employees agree that they should be able to work from anywhere as long as they get their work done and 76% of HR professionals say that remote, hybrid and distributed work approaches form a key part of their talent strategy. 56% of HR professionals said that they had lost employees due to mandating a return to the office.

Employees want work location flexibility, and the ability to work from home or from other non-office locations was ranked as a more desirable employer benefit than offering opportunities for professional development and training, enabling the employee to have a big impact or boasting a prestigious company reputation.

However, with more employees working from locations other than their designated office, and the boundaries between remote work, business trips and assignments starting to blur, HR professionals face increased tax and immigration compliance risks. 78% of employees surveyed had worked outside of their home state or country during the past 12 months, but only 33% had reported all those days to HR. It’s not surprising then that almost half of the HR professionals we surveyed had found people working where they shouldn’t – a 10% increase from last year.

Other key findings from the 2023 study include the following:

  • 98% of HR professionals at companies that offer remote work options believe it has benefited their organization.
  • 66% of employees believe that the chance to work in different locations internationally is critical to career growth, especially in more senior roles.
  • 77% of employees are comfortable traveling domestically for work and 74% of employees are comfortable traveling internationally for work.
  • 73% of employees want the option to tag on a ‘workcation’ onto their business trip – blurring the distinctions between business travel and remote work.
  • 94% of employees are happy for their employer to know where they are located at the country and state level with a further 92% being comfortable with their company knowing what city they are in and 79% being happy with their employer knowing what street they’re on.

Shawn Farshchi, CEO at Topia, comments:

“Our latest study shows the lines between remote work, business travel and global mobility are becoming fuzzier, making it more complicated for HR and mobility teams to manage their distributed employees. Demand for work location flexibility remains high and employees are willing to change jobs to access it. In order to recruit and retain the best employees and provide an exceptional employee experience, organizations need to be able to meet this employee demand but in a compliant way. No company wants to find themselves with penalties or fines because they’ve found employees working where they shouldn’t be. Although we know employees are not great at self-reporting their location, the findings show that they are willing to share their location with their employers. This is where technology can play an important role in making sure employers know where their employees are so they can manage their distributed workforces in a compliant way.”

This survey, the fourth annual survey of its kind, explores attitudes towards remote work, business travel and global mobility among both employees and HR professionals. Topia surveyed 1,800 full-time office workers from international firms. The participants were evenly split between the US and UK and included a separate set of questions for 300 HR professionals.

Additional Resources

Download the full survey results here.

About Topia

Topia is the leader in global talent mobility and distributed workforce technology. We empower companies to deploy, manage and engage employees anywhere in the world. The Topia platform enables organizations to deliver mobility as part of a broader talent strategy encompassing all types of employee movement – remote and distributed workforces, business travel and more traditional relocations and assignments. This drives enhanced employee experiences and competitive advantage by ensuring the right people are in the right place at the right time while remaining compliant no matter where they are. The Topia platform automates the entire global talent mobility process, including scenario-based planning, expat payroll, tax and immigration compliance, reporting and more. Topia powers global talent mobility programs for world-renowned brands such as Dell, Equinor and AXA. Topia is a global company and has raised over $100M from NewView Capital (formerly New Enterprise Associates), Notion Capital and others.


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