Sarah Elmobayed-Langevin
By Sarah May 23, 2023

The 2023 Guide on How to Promote Employees’ Presence at the Office

“How do you encourage people to come back to the office?”: the question that is on the lips of many business leaders and HR specialists.

How about we throw the question back at you, “Why not give employees a choice?”

Remote work is here to stay, so rather than relying on mandatory office attendance, why not think about how a hybrid work model on voluntary basis could be successfully implemented?

Allowing an employee to choose their winning conditions to perform well at work is a benefit to both them and their employer. 💡

Feeling skeptical? At Uzinakod, we have implemented various creative initiatives that have naturally encouraged a surge of presence in the office: such as the implementation of our Together at the Office Program and the creation of a Culture team (among others!).

Where to start?

First steps first, you’ve made the decision to implement a hybrid work model in your company! However, you are now faced with the question that is worth a thousand: “How?”

The best thing to do before starting anything is to go back to the source: the employees. What are they looking for? What are their needs? Does the nature of their work require on-site presence?

To do this, conduct a survey and get feedback from employees on how they work. For example, does saving time on transportation allow them to have a better work-life balance? Do they feel more productive when working from home? Do they feel isolated if they don’t come into the office? What are their commute-related benefit needs?

By analyzing the data from such a survey, it will give you ideas on the type of programs and measures to put in place (examples: office presence frequency, reservation of workspaces, etc.).

You may be thinking, “That’s all well and good, but the answers are going to be different from person to person.” Well, that’s just it! There’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all when it comes to employee needs. That’s why a flexible hybrid work model maximizes the chances of meeting everyone’s needs.

Together at the Office Program

Uzinakod’s Together at the Office Program

By listening to our employees, we were able to observe some trends. While corporate discounts on transit passes were made available to our employees, we found that only 20% of employees actually used this benefit. 🤯

Some employees pointed out that they do not live in the area served by the public transit service, and therefore could not take advantage of this benefit. It was definitely time to start thinking about how the majority of employees could get the most out of this perk!

This is how the Together at the Office Program was born; the result of several months of reflection and preparation.

What exactly is it about?

  • The Together at the Office Program provides employees with a lump sum payment proportional to the frequency of presence at the office. In other words, it’s an à la carte program!
  • Employees choose the plan that fits their reality. The program offers six choices of plans with different frequencies of presence at the office, ranging from several times a week, through occasional, to an “I’ll stay at home, but thanks for the invitation” option.
  • The program is based on trust. When employees choose their plan, it’s sort of a pledge on their honor that they will stick to the frequency they choose. ✋
  • Twice a year (at the beginning of winter and summer), employees are invited to review their choice of plan. Yes, the vagaries of the weather can have a big impact on the presence of employees at the office!
Together at the Office Program - Plans

Now you may be wondering whether an à la carte program truly works? We strongly believe it does.

Here are some statistics since the launch of our program in January 2023:

A Measure That Meets the Needs of the Majority

Only 20% of our employees were using the corporate discount on public transit (offered until December 2022). Since the introduction of the Together at the Office Program, 69% of them have signed up for one of the five plans requiring an on-site presence in Winter 2023, and 78% in Summer 2023. A clear and unequivocal difference!

The Crowd Favorite

The Weekly plan is the most popular of the lot, with 38% of registrations in Winter 2023 and 47% in Summer 2023! There is a significant 9% increase for the summer season. 📈

What about the 100% work from home option?

As mentioned, remote work is here to stay. From a statistical standpoint, the second most popular option is the Home plan. However, the latter went from 31% of enrollments in Winter 2023 to 22% in Summer 2023, which represents a 9% drop! This is a direct correlation with the increase in the Weekly plan.

“A few years ago, I dreamed of a company that would allow me to choose to work from the office or from home, without necessarily having to plan those days in advance. This is now my reality!”
– Fabien, Marketing Advisor

Creation of a Culture team

The Creation of a Culture Team

The implementation of a transportation bonus is a good first step to encourage employee attendance, but why stop there? At Uzinakod, we also made a strategic decision to implement a Culture team in the organization in parallel. 💛

To encourage people to get together and share moments that are easily lost while working from home (a conversation around the coffee machine, a lunchtime chat, etc.), it is important to find incentives that will make them want to come to the office.

These include:

  • Snacks, happy hours, lunches, etc.
  • Team dinners to celebrate great achievements.
  • In-person onboardings to welcome new employees
  • Seasonal activities, family days, etc.

Rather than planning revolutionary activities, by organizing small things here and there, we increase the traffic in the office, and therefore the funny moments spent between colleagues!

Extra tip: don’t forget to take suggestions from employees on what activities would interest them. 😉

A question probably comes to mind: “Do people really come if you organize something?” Yes, and here is some proof:

  • At our last maple-syrup-season themed snack in April 2023, 40% of employees came to the office to satisfy their sweet tooth! 🍁
  • To date, our monthly happy hours in 2023 attract an average of 33% of employees who take the opportunity to come into the office during the day.
  • When employees announce on the Teams channel that they will be at the office, there is a mass effect and up to 20% attendance is reported. The ripple effect is especially noticeable when employees say they are bringing treats with them!


In short, there are many ways to encourage a return to the office. A new facet in the overall offering of social benefits and an active corporate culture are the practices Uzinakod has put in place to do this.

While these practices certainly represent a greater cost for the company, the intangible impact of such an investment manifests itself in the employees’ sense of belonging. And that, is priceless.

Listening to our employees’ needs is at the heart of our flexible and responsive initiatives. Could this be the key to implementing a hybrid work model that works? The results of our initiatives show that it is.

So, why not try the formula yourself?

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