Citigroup Plans To Track UK Employees Attendance To Identify Hybrid Holdouts

credit: businessinsider

UK (Parliament Politic Magazine) – Citigroup has informed its employees in the United Kingdom that it will implement a system to monitor office attendance, reflecting the growing trend on Wall Street towards stricter remote work policies.

According to a memo obtained by Bloomberg News, managers will have access to attendance data to assess the effectiveness of the company’s hybrid work policy.

Employees who consistently fail to comply with the policy may face disciplinary measures, ranging from adjustments to their bonuses to termination.

The System Records One Swipe Per Person 

The memo states that the system will record one swipe per person, per day, per location, with a particular focus on employees who frequently miss office days.

Citigroup, which employs 12,500 people in the UK, requires hybrid workers to spend a minimum of three days in the office. The decision to implement monitoring in the UK follows a month-long consultation with employees.

Compared to other financial institutions, Citigroup has been regarded as one of the more flexible firms in terms of accommodating remote work arrangements in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The majority of its approximately 240,000 employees are considered hybrid workers, and the company has utilized this policy to attract and retain talent across its various business sectors during the tenure of CEO Jane Fraser.

Wallstreet To Implement Stricter Regulations 

Wall Street is implementing stricter regulations regarding remote work, despite resistance from employees who value their flexible schedules. A spokesperson from Citigroup has confirmed the details of a memo outlining these new rules.

Starting from August 7th, Citigroup will monitor the attendance of individual staff members on a monthly basis. Additionally, the bank will collect aggregated office data every two weeks for its London, Edinburgh, and Belfast offices.

The memo states that acceptable reasons for not being present in the office include limited site capacity, business travel, annual leave, sick leave, medical adjustments, employees with formal flexible working agreements, and part-time employment.

The Reported Data Will Be Shared With EMEA

UK employees were informed that the reported data will initially be shared with the EMEA operating committee and chief of staff, and may be distributed further. Managers will focus on weekly office entry data rather than average attendance. These measures target employees who frequently and inexplicably miss work while the company still operates under hybrid working policies. Citigroup has already been collecting similar data at its major offices throughout the United States.

By implementing these stricter regulations, Wall Street aims to maintain control over remote work arrangements while addressing concerns about accountability and productivity.

Citigroup is preparing to implement a system to monitor the attendance of its employees in the office, with a particular focus on those who fail to meet the requirement of spending a minimum of three days per week working in its UK operations.

Banks Have Tighten Their Policy On Hybrid Working 

This move comes as banks tighten their policies on hybrid working. While many of its Wall Street counterparts have insisted on full-time attendance, Citigroup has maintained a flexible approach to hybrid work. However, the bank is now engaging in discussions with employee groups to introduce monitoring and reporting measures to track the number of days its 9,000 UK staff spend in the office.

According to an internal memo from UK CEO James Bardrick, the reporting will primarily target employees who consistently fail to show up at the office. The reports may then be shared with managers to initiate further discussions.

Citigroup introduced its How We Work policy for UK staff last year, which mandates a minimum of three days of in-office work per week. Bank executives have argued that this hybrid approach gives them a competitive advantage in attracting talent, as other Wall Street rivals such as Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan have adopted a more rigid stance.

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Citigroup To Ensure Compliance With Its Office Attendance 

By implementing this monitoring system, Citigroup aims to ensure compliance with its office attendance requirements while maintaining its appeal as an employer offering flexible work arrangements.

According to research conducted by academics at the London School of Economics in November, employees in the financial sector were largely disregarding formal mandates to return to the office. However, more recently, banks have gained the upper hand in enforcing office attendance, as stated by Grace Lordan, the researcher.

Beth Malcolm

Beth Malcolm is Scottish based Journalist at Heriot-Watt University studying French and British Sign Language. She is originally from the north west of England but is living in Edinburgh to complete her studies.