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£500bn city investment firm tells staff they can work from home permanently

An asset management firm with more than £525bn under its control has told its 5,000 workers they no longer have to return to the office. 

Schroders, who moved into a state-of-the-art office in Wall Place, near Moorgate Station in 2018, emailed staff about the proposed change. 

The FTSE 100-listed firm is the first major London financial institution to allow permanent working from home. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is desperate for office workers to return to the city centre as the revenues of public transport companies have plummeted, while fewer people commuting also impacts service industries such as cafes, bars, restaurants and sandwich shops. 

However, according to The Telegraph, the firm believes the traditional 9-5 working week is dead. 

Finance has traditionally had a reputation for presenteeism, with workers expected to sit behind their desks for at least 12 hours a day and going home before other people was seen as a sign of weakness. 

The new regulations, which will continue when the Covid-19 pandemic has passed – were sent to employees using the firm’s intranet system. 

One source told The Telegraph: ‘Staff have been told the firm will not go back to nine-to-five.’

Pre-Covid, staff were entitled to work from home one day a week. 

It is understood that since the firm reopened its London office, only 100 staff returned to their desk.  

A new survey has found that one in three companies expect to make redundancies by the end of September in a blow to Britain’s hopes of economic recovery from the coronavirus crisis. 

The 33 per cent figure – revealed in a survey by human resources body the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and recruiter the Adecco Group – represents a rise from 22 per cent of companies shown in the groups’ spring quarterly report.

The latest survey suggests the jobs market will continue to shrink through the summer quarter, with the number of employers expecting to hire workers falling further below the number planning for redundancies.

Some 38 per cent of firms will introduce new or flexible working arrangements, with 69 per cent extending working from home options. 

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