We’re now in the third year of a worldwide pandemic that has altered the world of work dramatically…

Despite many employers’ expectations, a full-time return to office employment appears to be unattainable, due to the Omicron variant pushing back return-to-office plans once again for millions of individuals.

Given how the current labor market is playing out, it’s more likely than not that remote work will continue to be the new normal even after the pandemic is over.

The Rise Of Working From Home

It’s no secret that work from home has been on the rise for years now, but the current pandemic seems to have amplified this trend.

In 2015 a Gallup poll found that 43% of Americans already spent at least some time working remotely; by 2016 flexible workspaces had increased by 35%, and today over 70 million people are estimated to work from home at least some of the time.

But it’s not just that more people are working remotely – remote employment is also increasing across industries, including for positions previously considered too demanding to be done away from the office.

Will Remote Working Continue?

There are many factors that could influence whether or not remote work remains the new normal even after the pandemic is over, including everything from company culture to government regulations.

But one thing is certain: the way we work has changed forever, and there’s no going back

Is working from home here to stay? The truth is, it’s hard to say for sure…

Is Working From Home The New Norm?

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a surge in remote work, with people all over the world suddenly finding themselves working from home.

There are many factors that could influence whether or not remote work remains the new normal even after the pandemic is over, including everything from company culture to government regulation.

But one thing is certain: the way we work has changed forever, and there’s no going back.

Will remote work continue to grow in popularity, or will it eventually fall out of favor as people long for the camaraderie and structure of a traditional office environment?

Only time will tell, but in the meantime, one thing is clear: working from home is here to stay.

The Downstream Effects of Job Burnout

Job burnout was increasingly prevalent in the workplace as we entered 2022—the third year of the pandemic.

Findings by the American Psychological Association’s Work and Well-Being survey, 79 percent of 1,501 employees surveyed experienced work-related stress in the month before the interview. Three out of five workers (60%) indicated that work-related stress caused sleeplessness, and one-third (33%) reported job burnout.

The coronavirus pandemic has had a major impact on the world of work, leading to increased levels of job burnout and prompting many workers to switch to remote work arrangements.

While it remains unclear whether or not this trend will continue once the pandemic is over, one thing is certain: the way we work has changed forever.

According to the survey, workers—particularly those in public-facing roles—have grown cynical about their work and the public at large due to issues like the politicization of masks and vaccines, as well as feelings of lack of support from the government and workplaces.

Cynicism about work and the public was especially common among workers in public-facing roles. Nearly three-quarters of these workers (73%) said they had become more negative or cynical about their work since the pandemic began, and two-thirds (66%) said they had become more negative or cynical about the general public.

Despite these challenges, however, it’s clear that remote work is here to stay. With more and more workers finding it necessary to log on from home in order to manage the demands of their jobs amid the pandemic, we can only expect this trend to continue growing in popularity—and perhaps even become the new normal.

Remote Work Is A Permanent Fixture

According to the 2021 State of Remote Work Report from Owl Labs, remote work stayed popular throughout that year, with 90 percent of the 2,050 full-time remote employees reporting they were as productive or more productive when working remotely than at office.

The report also found that 81 percent of people who were not working remotely wanted to try it for at least a week, and 69 percent said they would like to work remotely full-time.

Overall, remote work has proven itself as a permanent fixture in today’s workforce.

Factors That May Discourage Some Organizations from Choosing a Remote Work Environment

The pandemic has forced organizations to re-evaluate how they operate, with many companies making the switch to remote work out of necessity. However, there are a few factors that could discourage some organizations from making the switch to a remote work environment on a permanent basis.

Place (location) Constraints:

Some companies may feel that they need to be located in a certain area or city in order to be successful. For example, a company that manufactures products may feel that it needs to be located near its suppliers in order to reduce shipping costs and time.

Communication Constraints:

Companies may find it difficult to keep their employees connected and engaged if they are working remotely. This could lead to higher staff turnover or a lack of productivity, resulting in reduced profits for the organization.

Technology Constraints:

Some companies may not have the necessary technology infrastructure needed to support remote work, such as fast and reliable internet connections and adequate video conferencing tools.

Collaboration Constraints:

Some employees may find it challenging to collaborate effectively with colleagues who are working remotely. This could lead to disagreements, communication breakdowns, and increased stress levels among workers.

Culture Constraints

Despite these constraints, many organizations are finding that the benefits of remote work far outweigh the costs.

With more and more workers becoming comfortable with working remotely, it seems likely that this trend will continue to grow in popularity—and perhaps even become the new normal for many companies in the not-too-distant future.

FAQs

How long will remote work last?

It’s hard to say for certain, but many experts believe that the popularity of remote work will continue to grow in the coming years. It may not be long before remote work is no longer considered a “new” trend—it could simply become the norm for many organizations.

Why are companies switching to a remote work environment?

Although the decision to switch to remote work may have been driven by necessity in the wake of the pandemic, companies are also finding that there are many benefits to this shift.
Remote work can help promote employee engagement and collaboration, reduce costs associated with commuting and office space, and lead to increased productivity.

How will remote work be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?

The effects of the pandemic on remote work are still unclear, but it seems likely that the popularity of working remotely will continue to grow in the coming months and years.
This could be due to the fact that many people have become comfortable with working remotely during the pandemic and may not want to return to a traditional office setting.

What are some of the challenges associated with remote work?

There are a few challenges that come along with working remotely, such as communication difficulties and a lack of collaboration. However, these challenges can be overcome with the right tools and strategies in place.

How many remote workers are in the US?

The number of remote workers in the US has been steadily increasing in recent years, and is currently estimated to be around 4.7 million. This number is expected to grow in the coming years as more companies switch to a remote work model.

How many remote workers are in the UK?

The number of remote workers in the UK is currently estimated to be around 1.54 million. This number is expected to grow in the coming years as more companies switch to a remote work model.

How many remote workers are in Canada?

The number of remote workers in Canada is currently estimated to be around 1.85 million. This number is expected to grow in the coming years as more companies switch to a remote work model.

Wrapping Up:

Although there are some challenges associated with remote work, many companies are finding that the benefits of this shift outweigh the costs.

With more and more workers becoming comfortable with working remotely, it seems likely that this trend will continue to grow in popularity—and perhaps even become the new normal for many organisations in the not-too-distant future.

About the Author

Passionate about helping households transition to sustainable energy with helpful information and resources.

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