May the workforce be with you

The voice of the European workforce 2020

The world of work was in flux well before COVID-19. However, the events of 2020 have accelerated these changes and fast tracked the future of work. This article brings the voice of the workforce to the fore, enabling organisations to learn from its views and ensure the right steps are taken to build on advances made during the pandemic.


Deloitte’s European Workforce survey collected the opinions of more than 10,000 workers across seven European countries (France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom). This article provides an overview of how employees have seen their working lives change in recent months due to COVID-19, and provides recommendations on what business leaders should consider going forwards.

Key findings

  • COVID-19 has given workers more autonomy: not just from remote working but a radical shift to a more independent way of working
  • Human factors have been more important supports compared to technology – trust, time and the network of colleagues
  • Remote working is here to stay: two in three employees expect to be working remotely more often
  • Adaptability is a vital skill: organisations need to invest in developing the capabilities of their workforce
  • Workers are not a monolithic block: organisations need to design policies and interventions based on a deep understanding of workers' attributes and needs

As the dust settles on the first phase of the pandemic, business leaders need to do more than return to their previous activities and routines. Instead, they must chart a new path forward, building on theacceleration of the future of work. Doing so without incorporating the views of the workforce would be a missed opportunity.

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