The Royal Bank of Canada is asking employees to return to in-office working to foster more in-person collaboration and creativity, reports Bloomberg.
The bank’s hybrid arrangements will involve working in person two to three days a week for most office jobs, according to an email from Rafael Ruffolo, a spokesperson for the bank, who noted these practices are already in place for some teams and regions. RBC is aiming to have any new arrangements in place by the end of September.
While many types of work can be done productively from outside the office, “technology can’t replicate the energy, spontaneity, big ideas, true sense of belonging and fun” of being together in person, said Dave McKay, the bank’s chief executive officer, in a memo to employees.
“For hybrid to continue to work effectively, we need to get the balance right and be a bit more deliberate about when and how we organize onsite. That’s why, as we move into the fall, I’m asking our leaders and colleagues to come together more often in person to work and collaborate.”
Many Canadian financial institutions began returning workers to the office on a voluntary basis in 2021 and on a more regular basis earlier this year, including RBC, Scotiabank, the Bank of Montreal, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Canada and TD Bank.
In an emailed statement to Benefits Canada, a spokesperson for the Bank of Montreal said its approach to in-office working remains unchanged. “Throughout the [coronavirus] pandemic, many employees continued to work from BMO locations to provide safe, consistent banking services for our customers. While many employees have returned to office-based work over the last year, both our ongoing returns and our work models (office-based, hybrid or remote) continue to be driven by customer and business needs.”
Scotiabank is leveraging what it’s learned throughout the pandemic to further refine its hybrid-working model, according to an emailed statement. “While continuing to provide choice and flexibility regarding work that can be done virtually, we are increasing our focus on coming together for certain types of work where there are clear benefits to being there in person.
“This includes collaborating with colleagues, meeting with clients or work that must meet specific regulatory requirements. We continue to test and learn our way through this, as we build the best possible workplace that meets the needs of our clients, while enabling Scotiabankers to thrive.”