Work from home means constantly. And it appears there are no start or stopping points. A new study by global staffing firm Robert Half shows employees are working around the clock while at home. More than half (55%) of professionals who transitioned to a remote setup as a result of the pandemic said they work on the weekend. In addition, one-third (34%) of remote employees reported regularly putting in more than eight hours a day.
According to the research, work-from-home habits vary by area. Among the five Canadian cities in the survey, those with the highest percentages of remote employees who work weekends include:
- Calgary (65%)
- Toronto (60%)
- Ottawa (56%)
“Despite the significant benefits of working remotely, such as saving time spent commuting and increased flexibility, it can also lead to putting in longer hours,” said David King, Canadian senior district president of Robert Half. “Heavier workloads have become a reality for many professionals during the pandemic, making it more challenging to disconnect while at home. It is critical that employers encourage their teams to take regular breaks and prioritize themselves and their wellbeing.”
Supporting Work-Life Balance Post-Pandemic
In a separate survey, human resources managers were asked what type of scheduling arrangements their company will likely offer to support work-life balance once the COVID-19 crisis is over.
“The recent pivot to new working models has made managers more aware of the importance of work-life balance,” added King. “As a result, many companies will continue to offer programs and perks put in place during COVID-19, such as flexible hours and more autonomy, well into the future.” The online surveys include responses from 500 workers 18 years of age or older and normally employed in office environments in Canada and more than 180 human resources managers at companies with 20 or more employees across Canada.