Survey reveals why employees stay home or return to work

Remote workers fear Covid; 42% of those who come back cite productivity

National /
Jan.January 13, 2021 10:30 AM
Workers cite Covid-19 risks for not returning to office; fewer than half who return cite productivity (iStock)

Workers cite Covid-19 risks for not returning to office; fewer than half who return cite productivity (iStock)

Americans are divided on whether to return to the office — and on the reasons for their choice.

Fifty-two percent of respondents to a large annual survey are choosing to work from home, and of those, 58 percent cited Covid-19 risks while commuting or working as a reason, according to the Wall Street Journal.

One in three remote workers cited an enhanced work-life balance, while 26 percent said they are more productive at home, according to the Edelman online survey of 31,050 adults from Oct. 19 to Nov. 18. Respondents could choose more than one reason.

Of the 48 percent who have returned to the office, 42 percent said they are more productive there, 34 percent said their employer made them feel safe and 22 percent said it made for a healthier work-life balance.

Still, other data show that not many office workers have returned to their desks. By the end of October, only one in 10 Manhattan workers had returned; by mid-November, only a quarter of employees nationwide had returned. Key-card data show the leading return-to-work cities, such as Dallas, still have fewer than half of workers back.

The real estate industry has been pushing for employees to return, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo this week announced a plan to encourage them.

[WSJ] — Sasha Jones






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