97% workers prefer working at home
Ninety-seven per cent of office workers who are currently working from home prefer doing just that, even when offices reopen.
A recent survey shows 97 per cent want to maintain working from home. Nine per cent prefer to work from home full time, whilst 88 per cent would want a 50-50 split between office and home.
The survey found that missing real-life contacts is still largely present but has not increased since last year.
The increasing number of employees are worried about the possible obligation of having to be back in the office again, especially to sit in on meetings.
A majority of employees who participated in the survey said they were able to find a work pattern they are ‘okay’ with.
On average, they communicate about 4.5 hours per day digitally.
In general, they are positive about brief digital communication.
The lack of physical contact is still seen in the research as the main disadvantage of working from home. More than 75 per cent say they miss informal and face-to-face contact with colleagues. The research shows that 22 per cent felt isolated.
“From the three psychological basic human needs – autonomy, competence and connection – the latter is most under pressure when people work home for such a long period of time as during the corona crisis,” said Dr. Martine Coun, from the Open University.
“Employees who are working from home seem to accept the fact that going into the office is not an option right now and have developed work and communication patterns they resign in,” she added.
This is a big change compared with the second lockdown when Coun saw social cohesion figures decline fast.
“Most people had managed working from home at that point, but the lack of contact put a strain on the cohesion within teams which was felt strongly,” she said, adding that “people also indicated to experience less work pleasure.”
The ideal situation seems to be a hybrid of working from home and the office. The respondents also want to (co-) determine the home/office schedule.
A large number expect that being back in the office will be an obligation again soon, and the social pressure to join ‘real’ meetings is feared.
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