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Gloucestershire Business News

Building society tells thousands to work anywhere

Nationwide, the UK's biggest building society, is to allow 13,000 office staff to choose where they work under a new scheme.

Nationwide, which has branches in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Cirencester and Stroud, said its "work anywhere" plan would give employees more control of their lives.

The building society is closing three offices in Swindon, with 3,000 staff given the choice of moving to the nearby HQ, working from home, or a bit of both.

Other UK staff may have the option to work from their local branch if they prefer, rather than travel to offices.

The results of a survey of Nationwide staff showed that 57 per cent wanted to work from home full-time after lockdown ends. More than a third (36 per cent) said they would prefer a mix of working at home and working in the office.

Joe Garner, chief executive of Nationwide Building Society, said: "The last year has taught many of us that 'how' we do our jobs is much more important than 'where' we do them from. We have listened and learned, and we are now deciding to move forward, not back. We are putting our employees in control of where they work from, inviting them to 'locate for their day' depending on what they need to achieve.

"Our data suggests that working in a home environment encourages us to think more about the impact on others when making decisions. As a member-owned organisation, we encourage a focus on humanity, while embracing technology. We are also continuing to invest in some of our office space to foster social contact, collaboration and creativity."

To enable people to work in the most effective way, Nationwide is continuing to invest in offices, ensuring they are suited to a work culture focused on flexibility and choice. More collaboration spaces, fewer traditional meeting rooms and a range of wellbeing measures such as quiet areas and designated walking and cycling routes will be in place.

Recognising that flexible working is more difficult for employees working in branches, Nationwide is working with them to understand what would help them better manage their working day around their home lives.

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