Hi there my beautiful lovelies! Hope you guys are doing well and staying safe. Do you get up in the morning, get dressed up and drive to work everyday? The chances are you are among the 35% whose work environment changed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Today, I will talk to you about the ever changing work environment.
Work Environment Before COVID
Before this global pandemic swept the world and upheaved our lives, only 7% of civilian workers in the US or around 9.8 million of this nation’s 140 million civilian benefits had some sort of telework benefits, according to the PEW Research. Those who had access to that privileges were largely managers, other white-collar professionals, and the highly paid. If you are not part of the group, the odds are that you wake up in the morning everyday, get dressed, and endure long commute to start your workday.
Telework, or working remotely, was a benefit available mostly in the private sectors than in the state or local government. According to the Phew Research group, about 7% of private sector workers, and 4% of local and state government workers have access to telework benefits. Their date does not include the federal government, the country’s largest employer with about 2.9 million civilian workers.
However, majority of us had to go to work everyday. Some jobs such as restaurant servers, plumbers, electricians, stylists, grocery workers, delivery men/women, police officers, healthcare workers by nature are difficult or impossible to do away from the standard worksite. Nevertheless, you are more likely not to have the privilege of working remotely.
Work Environment Since COVID-19
Major public health measure placed to combat the pandemic has been social distancing, leading to more people working from home, while kids joining school remotely. You may have guessed that the number of people working from home since the pandemic has increased to 50%. However, according to the Atlantic, 21% of Americans were still teleworking as of March 2021, while other 79% were leaving home like the old days. At it’s highest point, about 35% American were teleworking while the number dropped to only 13.4% in the final days of summer. This is mostly due to the availability of the vaccine.
Nonetheless, what the pandemic taught us is many jobs that were not thought to be feasible done without loss of productivity are being done from home, or at least it’s very much feasible. Whether you are seeing your doctor virtually, or doing virtual conferences, applications like Zoom, Google Hangout, Microsoft Team, or WebEx, working remotely has become more feasible.
So how will the work environment change due the pandemic, moving forward? Only time will tell. According to the World Economic Forum, two-thirds of people around the world want to work flexibly when the COVID-19 pandemic is over, while almost a third are prepared to quit their job if the boss makes them go back to the office fulltime. The need for flexibility was strongest among women, parents of school are children, adults under 35 and those with higher level of education and income. Finally, 64% workers in 29 countries said that they are more productive with a flexible work schedule, and only a third complained of burn out.
Since the pandemic, tech companies such as Microsoft, Twitter, Square, Spotify, Shopify, and Amazon are increasingly adopting extended work-from-home policies. Facebook is allowing certain employees to working remotely full time. According to CNBC article from March 2021, vaccinated or not, more than half of employees said that, if given the option, they would want to keep working from home even after the crisis from the pandemic subsides.
Whether we work on site, remotely, or have a hybrid work schedule, the way we view the work environment have changed since the pandemic started. What COVID has taught has that life is short and we need flexible job environment and will be productive and allow us to take care of ourselves and priorities. The emphasis on work-life balance has increased. However, you don’t build the same connection you would seeing your co-workers face-to-face than working remotely. This is specially true when starting a new position. What I want? I would prefer a more flexible hybrid schedule, which will allow me to keep my stronger connection, a social capital that money can buy, and have the flexibility work have a work life balance.
My beautiful lovelies! I would love to hear about your current and preferred work environment. I will be looking forward to your comments and feedbacks.
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