Great Britain

Rishi Sunak warns home working will harm your career as he urges young Brits ‘Get back to the office to get on’

RISHI Sunak today urged youngsters to get back to the office as he warned working from home could scupper their careers.

The chancellor said Zoom is "no substitute" for face-to-face work as employees can't form solid enough relationships through them.

Ministers now "expect and recommend a gradual return to the office over the summer" after dropping their work from home advice, The Times reports.

And in an interview with LinkedIn News, Mr Sunak today said how "valuable" working in an office can be.

Speaking of a recent visit in which he met youngsters starting out in finance, the Chancellor said: "I was telling them that the mentors I found when I first started my job I still talk to and they have been helpful to me even after we have gone in different ways.

I doubt I would have had those strong relationships if I was if I was doing my internship or my first bit of my career over Teams and Zoom.

Rishi Sunak Chancellor of the Exchequer

"I doubt I would have had those strong relationships if I was if I was doing my internship or my first bit of my career over Teams and Zoom.

"That's why I think for young people in particular being able to physically be in an office is valuable."

The Government has shifted its work from home messaging throughout the last year.

It urged Brits to get back to offices after the first wave of the pandemic before switching back again as the second wave took hold.

Rishi said: "We've kind of stopped saying that people should actively work from home and have now left it up to businesses to figure out the right approach.

"In terms of a return to work... in keeping with everything else that we are doing it's been a gradual return back to the offices."

Ministers are worried that city and town centres could be damaged if people don't go back to work.

But the Chancellor today vowed he has no plans to extend furlough cash for businesses beyond September, as Britain's economy begins bouncing back.

He told LinkedIn News: "There are no plans to extend furlough, it will have run for a year and a half.

He added: "I am confident that with the pace of the economic reopening and people's hiring intentions, the vast majority of people will be able to come back to work.

"But not everyone will be able to... I said at the start I wouldn't be able to save every job, I don't think any Chancellor could."

Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that more people are working in the office this month than they were last month.

In February 37 per cent of employees said they were working from home compared with 34 per cent who were travelling to work.

At the end of last month the number of people working from home was much smaller - with 20 per cent working remotely and 50 per cent fully in the office.

Home working was highest amongst those aged 30 to 49 years, at 45 per cent, falling to 34 per cent for those aged 16 to 29. 

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