Bosses across Australia have revealed what they expect the new work week to look like, and that’s great news if you enjoy working from home.

The pandemic has changed the way millions of Australians work and it could shape the way we manage our work-life balance for years to come.

Many workers decided they liked the freedom to work from home, even when restrictions were at their peak between closings in Australia’s larger states.

A trend of working from home on Mondays and Fridays was seen across Sydney from the end of May – creating a sort of ‘long weekend’ for those lucky enough to tell their bosses about it.

Now that life seems to be getting back to normal, these urges to work from home a few days a week persist.

The Committee for Sydney – a think tank that represents organizations such as universities, hospitality, construction and entertainment – spoke to bosses of 130 organizations that employ 640,000 workers across Australia in a new report which shows how the work landscape is changing.

He found that 51% of bosses expect their employees to come to the office just three days a week, and 36% expect their staff to group their workdays Tuesday through Thursday.

Only 7% of bosses believed staff working in an office environment would come five times a week like before the pandemic.

The Committee for Sydney says research should prompt rethinking public transport pricing – as research by Roy Morgan has shown a massive drop in the amount of movement around Sydney from pre-pandemic levels.

In the week starting May 24, for example, Monday’s movement was down 66% from pre-pandemic levels in January and February 2020. And it was down 63% Tuesday and Wednesday and 62%. % Thursday.

The reduction was also only 62% on Friday, but does not take into account the significant increase in the number of people leaving for leisure on Friday after work.

The committee says NSW could better use the awards – both as an incentive to attract people to the city and to help small businesses suffering from reduced travel.

“Experience in other cities around the world has shown that the key to building public support for price reforms is to make it clear that the public is winning something,” they said in the report.

“London has used the proceeds of congestion to dramatically increase public transport service. San Francisco used the proceeds of demand-side parking pricing to provide fewer parking tickets and to fund increased services.

“Very often, price reforms have finally proved popular, after initial public opposition.”

Some of the ideas of the committee include:

• Off-peak public transport fares to offset the possibility of an emerging three-day work week, as hybrid forms of remote work take hold after Covid-19. Lower rates on Mondays and Fridays, as well as nights and weekends, could help balance the loads and energize the city on the new ‘long weekend’.

• Demand-driven parking pricing in transport for NSW controlled spaces – to ensure supply availability and balance demand.

• A CBD congestion charge – which would support a broader effort to reduce traffic volumes in the CBD.

• An increase in the parking charge – which could be mortgaged to finance improvements to the public domain in the same area where it is generated.

• Differential pricing for freight vehicles can help manage curbside congestion as e-commerce increasingly leads to door-to-door deliveries.

• Better collection of journey data can enable more effective demand management interventions.


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