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Defining a Remote Work Policy: Aligning Actions and Intentions


After the long period of forced work from home, many knowledge workers have not only developed a strong habit of remote work, but also consider flexibility as their personal right and no longer as a privilege. Existing research suggest that the majority prefers to work two or three days per week from home and are likely to quit or search for a new job if forced to return to full time office work. Given these changes, companies are challenged to alter their work policies and satisfy the employee demands to retain talents. The subsequent decrease in office presence, also calls for transformations in the offices, as the free space opens up opportunities for cutting the rental costs, as well as the other expenses related to office maintenance, amenities, and perks. In this paper, we report our findings from comparing work policies in three Nordic tech and fintech companies and identify the discrepancies in the way the corporate intentions are communicated to the employees. We discuss the need for a more systematic approach to setting the goals behind a revised work policy and aligning the intensions with the company’s actions. Further, we discuss the need to resolve the inherent conflicts of interest between the individual employees (flexibility, individual productivity, and well-being) and the companies (profitability, quality of products and services, employee retention, attractiveness in the job market).


Academic chapter/article/Conference paper


  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 309344




  • SINTEF Digital / Software Engineering, Safety and Security
  • Blekinge Institute of Technology






Agile Processes in Software Engineering and Extreme Programming – Workshops: XP 2022 Workshops, Copenhagen, Denmark, June 13–17, 2022, and XP 2023 Workshops, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, June 13–16, 2023, Revised Selected Papers






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