Let’s make no bones about it: when we all got sent home at the start of the pandemic, lots of office workers found it a very strange thing to get used to. But get used to it, we did: once we got into our groove and worked out that the ironing board didn’t, in fact, make a great desk and that a corner of the living room was a far better bet, we settled in, and got down to it.
Working from home has many fantastic benefits. It’s cheaper, it gives you more time back for yourself – for exercise, or sleep – and it allows you to schedule your day in a way that really works for you. You can be really productive without the chatter and distractions of an office getting in the way.
A new study by Tracking Happiness found that the ability to work remotely is strongly linked to happiness at work. Respondents were asked, “If you look at your work, how would you rate your happiness on a scale from one to 10?” and “How much of your work is currently done remotely or from home?” One of the study’s key findings was that the ability to work remotely increases employee happiness by as much as 20%.
Millennials are happiest when working remotely and that returning to office-based work after the pandemic reduces employee happiness. Additionally, and this may come as no surprise, our happiness decreases as our commute times increase and our happiness at work is significantly related to our overall life happiness.
Despite that evidence, employers still want to see bums on seats in the office, and in the UK, according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the proportion of people working a hybrid model has risen in 2022.
You’re more likely to work a hybrid model if you’re a higher earner, too. Thirty-eight per cent of people earning £40,000 or more worked both at home and in the office during ONS’ survey period. The 30–49 age bracket is also the most likely to report hybrid working with 29% reporting doing so.
If you’re thinking about making a move to a company where there are more flexible remote or WFH policies, we’re taking a look at three big tech firms with established ways of working. Plus, there are thousands more jobs to discover on the London Economic Job Board too.
Short-video app TikTok hired thousands of staff during the pandemic thanks to booming growth, and has now formalised its remote and WFH policies. Staff received an email recently to clarify that some will be able to work remotely for up to two days a week after they return to the office. The company will also give employees the choice to work remotely from a domestic location based on manager approval. This policy applies to full-time employees and interns in the UK and Ireland as well as the United States, with other markets to follow. If you’d like to explore a career at TikTok, the company is hiring for a number of roles in London now.
Professional services company Deloitte announced its remote and WFH policies in mid-2021. Chief executive, Richard Houston confirmed that all UK staff will be able to choose when, where and how they work in the future, once it is safe to do so. Less than half of the firm’s UK workforce worked from home on a regular basis pre-Covid-19, but since the advent of the pandemic Deloitte’s hybrid working model has accelerated with up to 20,000 staff in the UK working from home or remotely since March 2020. Houston said, “I’m not going to announce any set number of days for people to be in the office or in specific locations. That means that our people can choose how often they come to the office, if they choose to do so at all, while focusing on how we can best serve our clients.” Discover Deloitte’s job opportunities.
IBM CEO Arvind Krishna recently announced that only 20% of employees were going into the office at least three times a week, and that only about 50% will be in the office more frequently than at home. “I don’t think it’ll ever cross 60%, so I think we’ve learned a new normal,” he said. As one of the world’s biggest and most-established technology companies, this is big news. IBM is hiring for hundreds of roles across a range of disciplines right now – to check out what is on offer in the UK, visit the Job Board.