In our new survey, we asked office workers what they lacked (and what they did not) about office life, plus how they feel about returning when the pandemic subsides.
Life can slowly return to normal now that 38% of the country is fully vaccinated and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) publishes a new guide stating that fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks or social distances
For many mean a return to normal also a return to office, so we went out to understand how workers feel about leaving telework in a Haven Life study.
Our study revealed that the biggest concern for respondents. is security. When this survey was conducted (at the end of April 2021), most office workers (71%) stated that employers should need worm-bearing and 53% believe that vaccines should be mandatory before returning to work.
Here are other returns to the office following COVID trends we found:
While most lack certain aspects of office life, the majority do not have a desire to return full time
57% of people still work remotely more than one years after the pandemic in America began. Of those who are still out, 51% say they miss going into the office, but 61% do not want to return full time.
When asked what they liked most about working from home for their company, the most popular answers were the shorter commute, the flexible schedule, the ability to save money, spend more time with the family and be able to sleep.
About 29% of the population say that their quality of work also increased while working remotely for their organization. So it was not only convenient to work from home – some people enjoyed this work arrangement.
When asked how the pandemic affected the quality of their work, 28.6% of respondents said it improved, 30.5% said it decreased and 40.9% reported no change.
Parents of young children are the ones who are most ready to return to work
One factor that has greatly contributed to someone missing or not missing a physical workplace is whether they had young children. About 63% of people with children under the age of 12 want to return to the office, compared with 51% of parents with older children and 38% of those without children. (Perhaps children's unintentional Zoom-comos have become less sweet and more furious over time. Or perhaps long-distance working parents just need a break from juggling their jobs with parenting and housekeeping. Or both.)
Working out for parents of young children was most affected in the past year – 43% of parents with children under the age of 12 saw a decrease in the quality of work during the pandemic. Comparative, only 23% of people without children and 26% of people with older children said the same.
Despite the advantages of working from home, it has some disadvantages. What people missed most about a physical office was the interaction with colleagues, separation of work and home life, embracing corporate culture, a dedicated workplace and being able to focus.
Low productivity, low social interaction and lack of work-life balance can affect mental and physical health. A USC study showed that 74% of people experienced a new mental issue after working from home, and women reported a higher degree of depression when switching to remote work. A return to the physical office can be a welcome relief for those who struggled to work remotely.
Workers expect greater job flexibility in a post-COVID-19 world
The Haven Life study showed that 43% of people believe in business will be the same as before, but many believe that working life will look different: 49% say they expect more options for hybrid / flex work from home, and 8% say they do not expect to ever go back to an office.
The pandemic of the past year forced many companies to find creative ways to control remotely, and this may continue in the future. Since the COVID 19 pandemic began, many companies – such as Google, Microsoft, Square and more – have announced that some or all workers will be able to work permanently from home or have a flexible schedule.
Countries such as Bermuda, Barbados, Iceland and the Cayman Islands also began to promote visas for remote workers to attract travelers. The MakeMyMove.com website tracks which US cities offer benefits and even cash to stimulate remote workers to move there. (Morgantown, WV, is leading the $ 20,000 package of $ 12,000 in cash, plus $ 8,000 in incentives.) Growing acceptance of people working remotely could mean we see more and more companies open to this type of work flexibility in the future.
More than 80% of people trust how their employer handles the pandemic
Many respondents (49%) have either already returned to the office or planned to return to work when the survey was conducted. Others expect to return this summer (16%) or next fall (14%), and some do not plan to return until 2022 (8%) or ever (13%).
A majority of people (79%) believe that a worm or vaccine should be required to return to the office, and 83% of people trust their employer to handle COVID-19 security protocols properly.
For the most part, employers' sentiments have not been affected by the pandemic. . Most (57%) said that their employers' handling of the pandemic over the past year did not change the way they experienced it.
About 29% of respondents like their employer more because of how they handled the pandemic, and 14% like their employer less because of how they handled the pandemic.
The pandemic caused people to reevaluate several areas of their economic lives, not just work
During the pandemic, 44% of people thought more about emergency savings. This is not surprising since turning off money seems to have been a top priority for many Americans, as evidenced by the savings levels in 2019 compared to 2020.
People saved about 8% of their disposable income in March 2019. The personal savings rate rose to 34% in April 2020 and is at 28% from March 2021. But savings were not the only thing that was at the top of people's brains – 37% said they had health insurance and 31% said that life insurance is considerations they made due to of COVID-19.
Overall, the survey shows that not everyone is happy to return to work, but there are aspects of office life that were missed. People with young children look forward to coming back to work the most, possibly because they have experienced the greatest impact on productivity and quality of work when they work at home.
And while guidelines and restrictions seem to be changing for the day when it comes to COVID-19, most people can come to terms with the feeling that when they return to work they want an office environment that feels familiar (hello, office snacks and water cooler calls), but still safe.
Survey methodology: Haven Life conducted a quantitative survey between 19 April and 22 April 2021 and collected N = 818 complete answers. The respondents had to be between 22-60 years old and identify themselves as someone who worked in an office building before the pandemic. Fifty-five percent of those surveyed were women (424) and 45% were men (370). Three percent of respondents did not state their gender (24).
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Haven Life is a customer-centric life insurance agency supported and wholly owned by the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe that navigating life insurance decisions, your personal finances and general well-being can be refreshingly easy.
Our Editorial Policy
Haven Life is a customer-centric life insurance agency that is supported and wholly owned by the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe that navigating life insurance decisions, your personal finances and general well-being can be refreshingly easy.
Our content is created for educational purposes only. Haven Life does not support the companies, products, services or strategies discussed here, but we hope they can make your life a little less difficult if they suit your situation.
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