There are competing theories about how hybrid and remote work will impact workforce diversity.
Some people of color have said that they prefer to work from home because it allows them to focus fully on their job without thinking about how other people perceive their behaviors and or having to worry about racist micro-aggressions. Hybrid structures can also free up a company’s recruiting staff to hire diverse talents from rural regions, and other countries, or to reach populations like military spouses, who move around often. However, many experts also worry that if more people from underrepresented groups—including workers from the LGBTQ+ community and people with disabilities—choose to work from elsewhere, they could enjoy fewer promotions and pay raises over time, leading to less diversity at the top of companies.
Working parents, and particularly women, are anxious for the same reason. For companies that have put in a lot of effort to make the workplace less white and male, the rise of remote work could lead to a setback. Already more women have dropped out of the workforce because of the pressures created by the pandemic.