American's number one workplace attribute is a flexible work-from-home policy, new research shows

American employees say that the number one workplace feature they'll be searching for post-COVID is the ability to work remotely when they please.

That's according to a new study of 2,000 Americans who are currently working remotely, which found that more than two in five (48%) say a company's policy on remote work is now their number one desired workplace attribute.

It's so important that nearly three in four (72%) said they wouldn't even consider working for a company that didn't offer flexible work-from-home policies.

A further 42% cited having access to the right digital tools as their top workplace priority moving forward followed closely by having new office equipment (40%).

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Kintone, the survey showed that nearly three-quarters of those working from home (71%) don't miss a full-time office setting at all and 76% would jump at the chance to work from home permanently.

Although 36% think their job is more difficult when working remotely, most (71%) said they have a better work-life balance when working from home.

Employees are happiest with the flexibility in their schedule (45%) and the ability to take breaks anytime (44%), with the average person taking a break around every two and a half hours.

And 51% reported that they feel like their workplace contributions have been acknowledged more since working from home.

"People are embracing remote work more than ever before. Workplace norms have shifted and employees are expecting to have a more robust work-life balance," stated Dave Landa, CEO of Kintone.

But working from home hasn't been all rainbows and butterflies either. The survey also revealed respondents' top work from home pain points in the past year.

From not having the right office equipment (35%) to having difficulty communicating with co-workers (36%) or having too many distractions (34%), working from home isn't a flawless system for many.

Employees say they would personally purchase an internet upgrade (48%), a new computer (40%) or a new desk or workstation (38%) to improve their work from home experience.

And one in five (22%) cited dissatisfaction with their company meeting employees' needs.

Respondents weren't shy about suggesting ways their company could help improve their work from home experience.

Almost half think adjusted company policies, including working hours and expectations (46%), would make a difference in their ordeal.

Other ways that companies can make working from home better is by reimbursing their employees for internet service or other utility bills (43%) or providing a new computer or laptop (41%).

Communication is key for half of respondents (52%) who feel like their company can benefit from communicating more directly with employees.

Almost six in 10 (57%) feel work-related communication was more productive in the office and 36% feel it has been a strain to effectively communicate with their leadership about career matters.

"Every major transformation like this comes with hurdles and uncertainties. In the end, the benefits of happier, more satisfied employees will justify the efforts to address these challenges head on. Employers should create policies and find solutions to meet these concerns and strengthen communications so that remote and hybrid work experiences will only improve in the post-pandemic era," Landa added.