Is working from home increasing the working hours? Let’s find out.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred bold predictions that the future of work is either remote or hybrid work. Millions of people were forced to work from home for more than a year but were allowed to do so remotely.

Keep in mind, it’s not just you. Many employees who have converted to working from home are working greater hours than before the epidemic.

According to new research published in Nature Human Behavior, remote working flexible hours for employees spend 10% more time logged in each week considering 40 hours workday. 

Longer workweeks are a troubling trend since they are more likely to cause weariness, burnout, and greater churn.

During the epidemic, other work-from-home research had similar outcomes. Earlier this year, a study of over 10,000 businesses discovered remote employees. In the United Kingdom, Canada, Austria, and other nations, workers were putting in an extra 2.5 hours per day than before the epidemic.

Work from home working hours

According to a poll conducted towards the end of 2020, 45 percent of those who changed to remote work due to the epidemic stated they worked more than they did before. Even more concerning, 75% stated they worked on weekends. Working from home for longer hours was more common among parents and those under 40.

According to top emotional well-being and health specialists, the biggest challenge experienced by students and workers alike when working from home over the last year has been creating routines and limits that allow them to compartmentalize their personal and professional life. The loss of these routines, as well as the blurred boundaries between work and home, has considerably harmed the mental health of 85% of the workforce.

The study discovered that homeworkers worked longer hours for less pay than their colleagues who worked in offices.

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Work from home vs. office

The epidemic has altered worldwide work patterns, with roughly one-third of U.S. employees now working from home. It will most certainly take years for work-life balance to return. And “the office” may never look the same as it did before the epidemic. With practically all employees reporting to packed workspaces on a regular basis. Video meetings and more flexible work environments may be here to stay in some circumstances.

Despite the fact that working from home results in lengthy hours, many employees would rather go into the office. In a recent study, over 80% of respondents said they would want to work from home at least once a week, and nearly 40% said they would resign or search for a new job if their company tried to push them back into an office full-time. Working from home five days a week was especially appealing to highly educated women with young children.

What is the Hybrid Work Model and how to get it right in 2021?

Furthermore, it is unclear if remote working hours for employees who are signed in for greater hours are truly doing more. The rise in working from home and its working hours might imply that employees were less productive and needed more time to accomplish their responsibilities. It might also mean that employees are taking more breaks or making more disruptions for non-work-related activities.

In the spring of 2020, more than a third of the world’s population was working from home, but just 13.4 percent were still locked up on the sofa with their laptop last month. That is still much more than the estimated 5% who work from home at least three days each week prior to the epidemic.

According to recent polls, thousands of people in Europe and America have never worked greater or tougher hours.

Since the onset of the coronavirus epidemic, the higher-earning employees suggested to work remotely from anywhere, as they can work for longer hours in their comfort zone.

Employees profit from the working from the home working system by saving the time they would have spent traveling. Along with businesses benefit as well by being able to reduce their office expenditures.

According to a recent survey conducted by NordVPN Teams, the average time employees spend working from home throughout the world has climbed by more than two hours each day since the epidemic began. 

(Source:https://www.trtworld.com/magazine/working-from-home-means-working-longer-hours-45224 )

According to a poll of 2,800 employees, over 70% of professionals who switched to the remote workforce due to the epidemic now work on weekends. And 45 percent typically work longer hours during the week than they did previously. Men were more likely than women to report working on weekends and working from home more than 40 hours per week. In addition, more workers under the age of 40 reported working weekends. And more than eight hours each day than those over the age of 40.

Flexible Remote Work From Home & Flexible Jobs

Although remote work allows employees greater freedom, it also makes it incredibly difficult to disengage. “Paul McDonald, senior executive director at Robert Half, stated “Many workers are under pressure to meet increased workloads and working for long hours to support the business and consumer demands.

Some of this behavior is due to fear and uncertainty about the economy and job security, according to Yost. When these three factors are combined—lack of boundary-setting skills, a lack of alternatives to work, and fear—the result is a perfect storm of overwork. Overworking from home may have serious effects on workers.

Stress is a major cause of heart attacks, depression, and other health issues. If you are always working, your body is striving to keep you alive. Putting strain on your organs, particularly your brain and heart. Sitting at your computer for an extended period of time can result in carpal tunnel syndrome, back problems, and eye problems. Wearing earphones all day might cause hearing loss.

When we’re at work, we have a start and end time that we normally stick to unless there’s something urgent. But when we’re at home, we don’t notice the time and don’t have colleagues to tell us to go home. We have no reason to leave because we can’t see our friends or go to the gym.

Supporting Work/Life Balance

Experts believe that the trend toward longer workdays will not be realistic. HR and line managers should promote flexible scheduling and encourage employees to take breaks and time off as required.

Managers must keep track of how many hours their workers work. They should make it a point to encourage time off and aid in balancing staff workloads. A weekly meeting to prioritize workloads, reassign tasks, or modify project end-dates would promote a healthier work environment. And it also promotes a culture that encourages employees to turn off their computers at night and on weekends. Line supervisors must demonstrate ‘checked out’ habits to their staff. So that they feel it is appropriate to do the same.

Hybrid home-and-office model

Along with other things, these and other data indicate that WFH hinders interaction, coordination. And businesses should not underestimate the value of networking and uninterrupted work time on employee productivity.

With growing workloads and a concerning tendency of working through illness, people’s occupations are becoming  entwined with their personal lives. Specially at a time when it is critical that the two stay distinct.

TRT WORLD asserts that – due to the COVID-19 outbreak and travel restrictions employees are urged to continue work from home culture owing to lower transportation expenses and more time spent with family.

Employers view time monitoring as an important tool for determining how productive employees are when working remotely. However, it is critical to provide the employees access to all of that data. So that they can make concrete adjustments in their lives to become more productive.

Another advantage of allowing workers to access their data is that it might assist them in disconnecting from work. Individuals forced to stay indoors, may begin working around the clock, adding to the tension. Working from home will have a big mental toll on people. People must maintain self-discipline in order to withdraw from jobs.

Bottom Line:

The only important thing we need to measure right now is employees’ mental health. Not whether folks are receiving a 5% or 10% productivity gain. And RemoteDesk can assist!

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