Return to office trending in the Philippines

Several major business groups and companies are backing the government’s move to get employees to return to their workplaces.
By: | March 24, 2022

The trend to return to office is gaining traction even as business process outsourcing (BPO) companies are appealing for the continuation of work-from-home (WFH) arrangements.

Employees returning to their workplaces represent a significant step in the country’s journey to post-pandemic recovery, said a statement signed by officials of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines, the Management Association of the Philippines, major mall operators Ayala Land, SM Prime, Megaworld and restaurant group Resto Ph.

“We look forward to heightened business activity which will benefit the entire nation and spur its return to economic wellness,” the statement said.

By sector, at least 1.1 million tourism workers have been adversely affected by the pandemic, while in 2020 alone, pandemic lockdowns impacted 423,075 construction workers; 464,841 accommodation and food service employees; and 492,067 transportation and storage workers.

READ: Unemployment rate lowest since January 2020 in the Philippines

These business groups’ stance was in contrast with that of the IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines which has urged for an extension of WFH arrangements for BPO workers, as well as the shift to a hybrid work scheme where workers do not need to be in the office during the entire workweek, according to ABS CBN News.