The number of trips Americans are making to their workplaces has dropped dramatically from pre-pandemic numbers, new report finds, as country caves in to ‘work from home’ culture and employees start refusing to return to work – or to stay in positions that require them to come to the office every day.
A new study by Work From Home Research, a research group made up of economists from the United States, United Kingdom and Mexico that hopes to gauge the feelings of the global workforce emerging from the pandemic, used the phone location data to find that US trips to work each day have dropped 20% from pre-pandemic numbers.
The survey results reported by the researchers also revealed that the average American employee now works 1.5 days a week from home. Americans also appear to have leaned into what researchers describe as ‘working from home’, with 15% saying they would likely look for a new job if told they had to return to the office for five days. per week.
The report comes as Americans look to a potential new workplace landscape emerging from the pandemic. Some companies, like Airbnb and Twitter, have introduced permanent working from home in a bid to encourage staff to stay on board, while others like JP Morgan Chase and Goldman Sachs have brought employees back to the office in recent months.
Researchers found that the number of US work trips fell by 20% compared to before the pandemic, surpassing only the UK in terms of reduction
The researchers collected survey data from 33,000 people around the world for the study. The UK leads the workforce most eager to continue working from home, with 23% of UK employees surveyed saying they would find a new job if forced into a long working week. five days in the office.
Australia and Canada are the only other two countries where more than one in five workers said they would quit their job if faced with the prospect of returning to full-time on-site work.
The United States ranks tenth out of all the countries included in the research, also behind: Hungary, the Netherlands, Sweden, Singapore, Russia and Germany.
Google’s mobility traffic data provides the most interesting look at Americans’ declining on-site work. Researchers found that the 20% drop in workplace travel was the second highest in the world, just behind the 24% drop in the UK. Neighboring Canada also nearly matched the US numbers.
While some of the workforce will likely work from home forever when Covid emerges, some fear this will hurt local productivity and economies.
A study published last month by researchers at Columbia University found that in-person meetings and brainstorming sessions often lead to stronger, more creative ideas than those conducted on video conferencing software like Zoom.
Some experts, like Britain’s John Caudwell, also warn that working from home leads to inefficiencies and has made simple government processes like renewing a passport or driving license a challenge in the country.
Another study from the UK rail industry found that 45% of workers felt more productive in the office, and half of workers even reported potentially unhealthy snacking habits when working from home.
More than one in ten US workers say they would quit their job if asked to work from the office five days a week, a mediocre total compared to other peer countries
Americans average about 1.5 days of virtual work per week, survey finds
Work has become a battleground between employers and workers in recent months.
Apple, one of the largest companies in the world, recently went to war with its employees over working from home from its Cupertino, California-based headquarters.
The company asked its employees to work three days away from the office in early April, a decision which was met with dismay by some of the company’s staff.
“I don’t care if I come back to work here,” said an employee on the company’s anonymous bulletin board Blind this week. “It was a great boost for my resume, but it’s not for me,” the worker added.
Several Apple employees expressed frustration with the new policy, and many commenters backed them up by saying “yeah, f*** Apple.”
“I’m going to go say hello and meet everyone since I haven’t since I started and then submit my resignation when I get home,” the same employee wrote. “I already know that I won’t be able to make the trip and sit still for 8 hours.”
Other Apple employees have complained about what they believe is Apple’s unfair policy, which they say is stricter than other tech companies including Google, Amazon and Meta.
Goldman Sachs, one of the world’s largest investment banks, also earlier this year required all of its employees to also return to work five days a week.
JP Morgan Chase, another global capital titan, has been forced by employees to reduce working from home days to two days a week, from three, after numerous complaints from the workforce about the return at work in the office.