‘Productivity at home is a strong predictor of preferences for telework’
A vast majority of teleworkers don’t seem to be missing a beat when it comes to productivity at work.
Of those workers who are currently working from home, having worked outside the home before the COVID-19 pandemic, nine in 10 (90.4 per cent) say they are accomplishing at least as much work per hour as they did when they were working outside the home, according to a Statistics Canada (StatCan) report.
“Regardless of age, educational attainment, marital status, industry, occupation and whether or not they have children, men and women tended to report to a similar extent being at least as productive at home as they were in the past at their usual place of work,” says StatCan.
Nearly six in 10 (58 per cent) report accomplishing about the same amount of work per hour, while 32 per cent reported say they accomplish more work per hour. The remaining 10 per cent mention that they accomplish less work per hour compared to their usual place of work.
Among the latter, one in five cite a lack of interaction with co-workers as the main reason, and close to 20 per cent cite having to care for children or other family members. The remainder cite accessing work-related information or devices (11 per cent), having to do additional work to get things done (13 per cent), having an inadequate physical work space (10 per cent) or experiencing difficulty with Internet speed (five per cent).
Eighty-two per cent of managers in the U.S. feel their workload has increased but 80 per cent say they have been more productive, according to a separate report.
However, 34.7 per cent of new teleworkers say they work longer hours now. This number jumps to 47.8 per cent among respondents who accomplish more work per hour, with the following industries seeing the biggest change:
- finance and insurance (43.6 per cent)
- trade, transportation and warehousing (38.9 per cent)
- educational services (35.6 per cent)
- goods-producing industries (34.2 per cent)
- professional, scientific and technical services (34.1 per cent)
- public administration (32.8 per cent)
- healthcare and social assistance (30.2 per cent)
Nearly half (47 per cent) of Canadian workers feel exhausted and 51 per cent feel stressed, compared to the global average of 39 per cent and 42 per cent, respectively, according to a report from Microsoft.
Still, 79.8 per cent of new teleworkers would want to work at least half of their hours at home once the COVID-19 pandemic is over, finds Ottawa.
Overall, 41 per cent of new teleworkers indicate that they would prefer working about half of their hours at home and the other half outside the home, while 39 per cent would prefer working most (24 per cent) or all (15 per cent) of their hours at home. The remaining 20 per cent would prefer working most (11 per cent) or all (nine per cent) of their hours outside the home.
“Workers who reported accomplishing more work per hour while working from home indicated that they would prefer working most or all of their hours at home much more often (57 per cent) than all other workers (30 per cent),” says StatCan. “The large difference observed between these two groups remained in multivariate analyses, thereby confirming that productivity at home is a strong predictor of preferences for telework.”