Goldman Sachs employees are in the office way more than Bank of America's
You can take Grade A students, the kind who never miss classes and take extra credit classes, and grind them into bankers. You can’t guarantee, however, that they’ll never break the rules.
The FT reported earlier today that Bank of America has sent out pre-disciplinary warnings to staff who are not fulfilling its office-presence requirements. BofA expects its staff to be in the office for three days of the week, on a par with Citi, and less than the likes of Goldman Sachs, which would like people in every day.
BofA’s bankers avoiding the office isn’t a surprise to anyone who’s ever worked in an office (we’ve written at length about how much work-from-home is preferred), but now that they're being disciplined back to their desks, BofA's people can at least take solace that they've been working from home less than people elsewhere.
As part of our bonus and job market expectations report, we asked 2,000 people in the last quarter of 2023 about their days in the office. The results by bank are shown in the table below.
In line with Goldman's preference for people working in the office full time, respondents to our survey who worked for Goldman Sachs said they were in the office nearly five full days a week (4.71) on average in 2023. Although Goldman people had the biggest increase in office days in 2023, they were also in the office most frequently in 2022.
Where should you work if you don't like the office? Citi respondents said they had the fewest in-office days last year, with respondents at HSBC and BofA just behind them. Moreover, in-office days barely increased at Citi and BofA between 2022 and 2023.
Banks, under pressure to utilize their usually-very-expensive commercial real estate footprints, have been tough on making sure bankers return from home. Whilst there was serious resistance from the workforce, who greatly appreciate a flexible work-from-home routine (as shown in our latest ideal employer report), a tightening job market in the industry has handed significant bargaining power back to employers. That bodes poorly for work-from-home enthusiasts, and very well for commercial property owners.
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