Two-thirds of UK staff feel they can work effectively from home

Just over two-thirds (67%) of UK employees feel that technological advancements allow them to adopt flexible and home working while continuing to be effective in their job, according to research by Glassdoor.

The research undertaken between 11 and 16 March 2020, surveying 1,028 UK office employees, found that three-quarters (76%) of employees would support a mandate from their employer to work from home during the current Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak.

Almost six in 10 (59%) felt that Coronavirus would likely mean flexible and remote working policies within their business would become less strict in the long-term.

Almost half (46%) suggested that they would be just as productive that they are in the office when working at home, while 19% stated that working from home would actually make them more productive. Only 14% stated that they would not be able to perform their office job from home.

Two-fifths (42%) have found that home working helps them manage their time better, 38% cite better work-life balance, while 28% say home working makes family life easier to balance.

However, 23% say family matters are a considerable distraction while working from home, and 27% stated that they face fewer distractions in the workplace.

Financially, employees are also better off when working from home, with 59% saving more money on commuting costs, and 34% saying they are more likely to cook for themselves, spending less money on lunch.

The distractions involved in working at home include watching TV (30%), doing housework (28%), and social media (24%), cooking (20%), running errands (19%), napping (13%), and doing exercise (4%).

When it comes to the logistics of home working, 38% of UK employees felt they should be able to claim expenses for the internet used, 33% argued that they should be reimbursed for heating costs, and 23% would want to claim back their phone bill. Meanwhile, 13% felt they should be able to claim back costs for coffee, while 7% would like to request reimbursement for snacks.

Joe Wiggins, careers expert at Glassdoor, said: “This is the week that many employees based in the UK have been advised to work from home, and for many, this might be a new experience.

“Luckily, our figures suggest that office employees will adapt to this new way of life pretty quickly, with many even reveling in the fact that they will be more productive, save money and will find a better work-life balance.

“It is still early days in this unprecedented situation, but if people are as productive as they say they are, who knows what impact this will have on liberating work from home policies in the long term. Perhaps the office as we know it is a thing of the past?”