Work, Workers & Workplaces: Trends & Statistics

Now that many organizations are planning to resume onsite operations, what would change at our workplaces? PwC's COVID-19 CFO Pulse survey from May 2020 indicates what's on the minds of global finance leaders. While workplace safety-related measures seem to the top focus everywhere, most companies may steer clear of provisioning additional monetary employee benefits. Aspects like shift rotations or long term remote work as well may not have a universal consensus and may vary by industry and region.

Businesses in the US have slowly started opening. But are workers ready to return to their offices or workplaces?

In a survey where Gallup asked remote workers about their preferences for getting back to the office once restrictions on businesses and schools are lifted, the following statistics emerged:

  • 26% said that if it were up to them, they would return to their office or workplace once businesses and schools reopen.
  • 25% said they would rather work from home because of concerns about the coronavirus
  • Remaining remote workers said that if it were up to them, they would continue to work from home because they prefer it. This category included 2 subcategories of remote workers
    • 22% of remote workers for whom personal preference is the only reason 
    • 27% of remote workers with concerns about the coronavirus in addition to personal preference.

In summary, it appears only a quarter of the remote workers are emotionally ready. While communications and assurances around coronavirus could be something that will help abate employee concerns to get back, it also seems the preference for working from home itself is a big consideration. Hence businesses need to evaluate true productivity impact from working from home. If there is none, adopting a long term work from home  strategy may be the key for businesses to reach the new normal quickly.