Working from home, godsend or tragedy?
I would quite like to know what the crisis is doing to us. But then really scientifically researched. Because those online meetings, those children who walk into the picture and hubby who noisily holds his own digital meeting in the background, that doesn't bother us. Right?
Well, concludes the Monitor Group, this is not so bad. People generally do enjoy working from home. In June 2020, their survey found that employees give an average of 7.3 for their job happiness. An increase of 0.1 points compared to 2019. Although this figure did decline slightly during the second lockdown.
But note that this is an average. The nuance is in the detail.
Looking at the eight factors of job happiness, the Monitor Group sees slight decreases in the factors Satisfaction and Appreciation. However, the biggest drop is seen in the Competence factor: just under half of employees say they have opportunities to learn and grow in corona time, compared to two-thirds in 2019!
Besides decreases, increases are also visible. Employee Autonomy has increased by a whopping 10%; 82% report being able to perform their work independently. Probably the most important reason for this is the increase in the average number of home working hours, which rose from four hours before the corona crisis to over 21 now!
The Connection factor has two faces. On the one hand, employees experience less direct connection with their colleagues than before the covid, but on the other hand, the we-feeling did rise: from 50% to as much as 70 per cent. Rise in we-feeling, the Monitor Group researchers note, is more often seen in a crisis period. A common problem makes group cohesion grow.
Satisfaction with communication increased the most during the corona crisis. This topic is usually one of the main areas for improvement in organisations, but during the corona crisis it suddenly turns out to be something people are most positive about. As many as four-fifths of staff show they are happy with the information they receive to get the job done as well as on important issues affecting the organisation, while before the corona crisis those percentages were around 64%. A hefty increase, in other words. Interestingly, the feeling of job security has not declined, although this may vary by sector.
As a notable bonus, the Monitor Group also reveals that a majority of those surveyed feel that they are more productive and can concentrate better at home. Will that put an end to that detested office garden?
What I myself can add from the customer contacts I have is that one observes accelerated learning curves among staff. What forced self-employment does not do to us. Strictly speaking, this should lead to accelerated wage increases. But promise, I'll keep that info between us.