A majority (62 per cent) of Canadians want to continue working from home at least 40 per cent of the work week once the coronavirus pandemic recedes, according to a global survey by LHH and the Adecco Group.
The survey — which polled 14,800 workers in 25 countries, including 1,000 Canadians — also found more than half (53 per cent) of global respondents said they want to continue working remotely, compared to 47 per cent who want to return to the workplace.
Respondents with children (51 per cent) were more likely to want to work onsite compared to those who aren’t parents (42 per cent). And younger respondents were more likely to want to see a return to the workplace, including 56 per cent of those from generation Z and 48 per cent of millennials. In contrast, only 46 per cent of generation X respondents and 44 per cent of baby boomers wanted to work in the office.
Meanwhile, 42 per cent of global respondents said they have anxiety regarding returning to the physical workplace, compared to 57 per cent who expressed excitement about seeing colleagues in person again. And respondents said their productivity hasn’t suffered with the switch to remote working as 82 per cent said they feel as or more productive than they were when working onsite. Among Canadian respondents, 71 per cent said they have a setup at home that allows them to work well remotely.
Since the shift, 50 per cent of global workers said their work-life balance has improved, 47 per cent said their time management has gotten better and 39 per cent reported improvement in trust management between them and their department leaders.
However, the survey also showed employee well-being has decreased, with three in 10 (32 per cent) saying their mental wellness has declined in the last 12 months, highest among those from gen Z (39 per cent) and followed by baby boomers (34 per cent), gen X (32 per cent) and millennials (30 per cent).
In addition, leaders don’t appear to be equipped to support employee well-being, with 54 per cent of young managers saying they’ve suffered burnout. Of note, managers also reported they find it difficult to identify when staff may be struggling with mental-health issues (53 per cent) or are being overworked and experiencing burnout (51 per cent).
Almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of respondents said they’ve worked more than 40 hours per week over the last 12 months, making burnout a top cause for concern for almost 40 per cent of the global workforce polled. As such, most (72 per cent) of the respondents said they want employers to revisit the length of the working week and another 73 per cent said contracts should focus on the needs of the role rather than the number of hours worked. As well, 76 per cent said support for flexible working needs will be important after the pandemic.