According to recent surveys, thousands in Europe and America have never worked longer and harder.
Many white-collar workers have been forced to work from home since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, but this has also led to employees putting in extra hours.
Several international companies have adopted a work-from-home model to tackle Covid-19. The move has given both employers and employees some advantages.
Under the remote working system, employees are saving the time originally dedicated to commuting, while companies are equally benefiting by being able to cut their office costs, too.
All advantages aside, there is a downside to working remotely, too. According to a recent study carried out by NordVPN Teams, a virtual private network service provider, the average time employees spend working remotely in the US, the UK, Canada and Austria has increased by more than two hours per day since the starting of the pandemic.
NordVPN analysts obtained the average remote working hours from the company’s servers to figure out how private sector networks were used by remote employees.
For the same people in the UK, working time has increased by nearly 25 percent, along with employees in the Netherlands. Generally, these workers are logging off at 8 pm, according to the report.
For the US, average working hours have increased from eight to 11 hours since the start of the pandemic.
Among the countries checked by NordVPN, the average working time has actually decreased in Belgium - from nine hours to just eight.
NordVPN Teams said, “Online working hours across some European countries have started to stabilise with employees having had the opportunity to return to the office in some capacity”
“However, employees in the UK and the Netherlands are working until 8pm, regularly logging off later than usual to wrap up an extended working day.”
According to separate research, conducted by remote team-building firm, Wildgoose, 44 percent of UK employees have been expected to work more over the last year. The mid-sized firms are mostly increasing their employees’ workload.
Short lunch breaks and working through illness are other disadvantages for the employees working from home, according to data obtained by Wildgoose that spoke to employees from 133 British companies.
Furthermore, in another study, one-fifth of workers have not been taking a break at lunch because “they were too absorbed in their work.”
Despite the negative consequences that have come from not travelling to an office on a daily basis, 69 percent of workers want to continue home working due to the cut in commuting costs and the increased time spent with family.
As many countries adopt a partial remote working system, American automobile maker Ford has recently announced it would allow about 86,000 non-manufacturing global employees the option to move to a hybrid home-and-office model.