Survey Indicates Irish Workers Want Remote Working to Stay

By Steven Galvin - Last update


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A new survey* covering different aspects of the experience of remote working in Ireland has suggested that most Irish workers are in favour of the concept of remote working continuing in some shape or form as we begin the transition towards a post-COVID-19 world of work. 

The COVID-19 crisis gave rise to a mass shift toward working from home for workers whose institutions and businesses were able to continue to operate during the pandemic and the restrictions it brought about.

Studies have shown that Ireland had one of the highest rates of employees working from home during the Covid-19 crisis. Adapting to the new working environment, it now seems that the majority of workers do not envisage a return to pre-COVID-19 working environments.

Irish Workers Want Remote Working to Stay

The survey found that 95% were in favour of working remotely on an on-going basis to some extent. This figure clearly demonstrates workers’ enthusiasm to keep working at home beyond the current restrictions which forced the situation of remote working to be put into place last year. 

Only 5% of those surveyed indicated that they would not want to work remotely after the crisis is over

Digging further into the survey, 53%, said they would like to work remotely several times a week, suggesting a hybrid structure be put into practice whereby the working environment would be split between home and the office. 32% said they would like to work fully remotely proposing that full-time remote work should remain in effect in a post-COVID-19 world. While 10% of the workers surveyed expressed a desire to return to the office several times a month and spend the remaining traditional office hours working remotely.

Looking at reasons stated behind people’s wish to continue to work from home the top three reasons were listed as greater flexibility, makes life easier, and increases productivity.

Working  outside of a traditional office environment has given people the flexibility to design their days, which has allowed many of them to balance their professional and personal lives to their fullest potential. The ability to start and end their day as they choose has led to a greater control over their lives according to workers. They are able to complete their work while also managing a schedule that allows them to organise and fit in personal responsibilities. Most workers also believed that working from home had increased their productivity – whether that was due to experiencing fewer interruptions, spending more time at a desk / working, less meetings, more time and fewer distractions. As well as being more productive, many workers were actually working longer hours as a result of working from home according to the survey as over half of those surveyed indicated that they work more hours, on average, when working remotely
compared to onsite.

You can read the full survey here.

 

*McCarthy, A., O’Connor, N., Ó Síocháin, T. and Frost, D. (2021). Remote Working: Ireland’s National Survey – Phase III Report. Galway, Ireland: NUI Galway Whitaker Institute & Western Development Commission.


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Steven Galvin

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