Tech Work Report Reveals Shift Toward Office, Freelance Workforce

A.Team, a members-only network of top product builders, and MassChallenge, a network for innovators, released their inaugural 2022 Tech Work Report. Results show the tech industry faces a pivotal moment with the backdrop of the pandemic and difficult economic conditions, pushing leaders to change direction and adapt the way they do business.

The 2022 Tech Work Report arrives on the heels of the Sept. 6 deadline that many tech companies set mandating employees to return to the office. It offers a detailed look at the change in tech leaders’ sentiments toward remote vs. in-office work models and insight into how they’re navigating hiring challenges and reassessing business priorities amid the market downturn.

Key findings include:

Many leaders want employees back in the office, despite the success of remote work and the challenge of replacing top performers who exited during the pandemic.

  • 44 percent say a significant number of their top performers have exited due to the Great Resignation, and 62 percent report it takes four months or more to hire product and engineering talent.
  • 62 percent believe shifting to a more flexible work model during the pandemic has increased employee productivity, while 53 percent say that an economic downturn would make it easier to require employees to return to the office.
  • 37 percent intend to have employees work from the office more over the next 12 months – that number jumps to 55 percent for more mature Series B, C, D, E and public companies.

Amid frustrations with the traditional hiring model, tech founders and execs are ramping up hiring plans and embracing freelancers.

  • 45 percent say their hiring plans have increased over the last six months. For founders and executives at the Series B to IPO stage, that number jumps to 59 percent.
  • 70 percent say the traditional recruiting process takes too long and is too expensive. Product and engineering roles are the hardest to fill (39 percent).
  • 73 percent of tech companies now have integrated teams of freelancers and full-time employees, and 71 percent say that bringing on freelancers gives their business greater agility during times of economic uncertainty

Despite cautions from top VCs to not fundraise in the next 24 months, most still plan to try:

  • 60 percent expect to fundraise in the next 12 months, and 78 percent plan to in the next 18 months.
  • When asked to rank their top priorities, revenue growth was the most popular choice at 43 percent, followed by fundraising (22 percent). Reducing burn rate and achieving profitability was a distance third (14 percent).

“What’s most fascinating about these findings is how prevalent blended teams of freelancers and full-time employees have become since pre-pandemic times,” said Raphael Ouzan, A.Team co-founder and CEO. “This emerging talent model is more than just a cost-cutting measure to weather hard economic conditions. We’re seeing some of the world’s most highly skilled builders ditching the ‘one job, one role’ mentality to go independent. Tech leaders who embrace this growing workforce are bringing on people they could never hire full-time. They’ll have a strong advantage over competitors—attracting the brightest minds to build world-changing products at record speed.”

To view the full findings within the 2022 Tech Work report, visit