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Survey: Most retailers won’t require vaccines for workers, but will incentivize

As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more readily available, a majority of retailers will not mandate employees be inoculated.

Two-thirds (66%) of retailers said they will allow employees to remain working on-site even if they choose not to be inoculated, according to a Korn Ferry survey of more than 50 major U.S. retailers. 

While most retailers are not mandating vaccinations, 53% said they will either implement or are considering implementing incentives for those employees who do get vaccinated. Incentives include two hours of pay for each dose, a fixed dollar amount or additional time off to be used at a later date. 

The survey also found there is still caution regarding corporate retail employees returning to the office, with only 8% stating the majority of workers have already returned. Eighty-four percent said it will be at least June before the majority of corporate workers return to the office. Nineteen percent said the return won’t happen until sometime after September.

When corporate workers do return to the office, it won’t be to pre-pandemic levels. Twenty-five percent of retailers said they will allow more than half of their corporate employees to continue working remotely, with a third (33%) allowing remote workers to work from home all the time. 
“We’ve already seen some retailers scale back corporate headquarters and given the new world order, this is a trend that will most likely continue,” said Craig Rowley, retail expert, Korn Ferry. 

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