Around half (52%) of respondents would prefer to take a pay cut than be restricted to working only in an office environment, according to research by digital security organisation Avast.
Its 2018 Mobile workforce report, which surveyed 1,850 employees who work for small businesses in the UK and US and who spend at least one day a week working from home, also found that 12% of respondents would choose the flexibility to work from home over a pay rise, even if they were offered a pay increase of 25%.
Furthermore, mobile working can reap productivity-related benefits, according to the research, as 33% of respondents believe that being able to work remotely allows them a better work-life balance and 30% feels it makes them more productive. A third (34%) stated that mobile working makes them happier and 25% appreciated the ability to structure their work day around what suits them; for 21% of respondents, this means producing higher quality work, while 20% feel they get the same job done in less time. However, 39% of employees also confess to working longer hours than they are supposed to when working from home.
Around a third (35%) of respondents claim that stress and anxiety are the factors that most affect their productivity when working in the office, compared to interruptions from colleagues (34%), employees chatting (33%), noise and disruption (33%) and working at times that do not suit their needs (28%).
More than a third (38%) feel that they are at the their most productive when working from home, versus 35% who believe they are at their most productive when working in the office. A fifth (21%) claim they are most productive when working in a public space, such as a café or library. Despite this, 38% of respondents said that they do not receive the technological support or expertise they need when working from home or in a public place.
Kevin Chapman (pictured), senior vice president and general manager at Avast Business, said: “The [nine to five] workplace is a thing of the past, and the employees entering the workforce today are demanding increased flexibility with hours, location and personalised benefits.
“[While] proven in some cases to increase employee satisfaction, and even productivity, there are very real security issues that need to be addressed. Businesses need to be in a position where they provide the tools that not only enable flexibility, but do so in a secure way. It’s also important not to forget those employees that would prefer to remain in a traditional office environment. A balance must be struck to enable all employees to work in a way that is most beneficial to them.”