Study: Americans Are Doing More of Their Work from Home

Study: Americans Are Doing More of Their Work from Home

At Techpinions, Technalysis Research founder and chief analyst Bob O’Donnell discusses the findings of his organization’s latest survey on the work habits of professionals in the US, which shows that they are working less and less from the office, and more and more from home:

At a high level, people only spend about 46 percent of their average 43-hour work week in a traditional office or cubicle environment. We’ve been witnessing a shift away from those workspaces for a long time, but the move is likely to accelerate, as most workers believe that the percentage will drop to just under 41 percent in two years.

What’s surprising, however, is that the biggest increase won’t be coming from trendy new alternative workspaces or other nontraditional worksites. Instead, it’s working at home. Toiling in your PJs (or whatever attire you choose to wear at home) is expected to jump from 11 percent of the total work week to 16 percent in two years.

Directly related is the growing importance of work-time flexibility. In fact, when asked to rank the importance of a company’s tech initiatives that keep employees happy and productive at work, the No. 1 choice on a rating of eight alternatives was work-time flexibility. Not surprisingly, when people were asked in a separate question about the benefits of working at home, the top reason they cited was — you guessed it — work-time flexibility.

Other recent studies have indicated that many US workers would take a pay cut in exchange for the option to work from home, and that people who work from home are more productive and less likely to quit. Another study found that the reason so many professionals prefer not to work in an office is that office noise is especially distracting. This desire to work from home may also reflect an increased demand for work-life balance, which CEB’s Global Talent Monitor finds to be one of the top drivers of employee attraction worldwide