Study Finds Productivity Not Deterred by Shift to Remote Work

Recent research shows that the skepticism many companies had about working from home may be eroding. Ninety-four percent of 800 employers surveyed by Mercer, an HR and workplace benefits consulting firm, said that productivity was the same as or higher than it was before the pandemic, even with their employees working remotely.

Research is showing that employees are working three hours longer per day right now, so there is some question as to whether productivity per hour is actually declining, and these longer hours raise concerns around burnout.

Looking ahead, 83% of respondents said that even after the health crisis has passed, they plan to put more flexible work policies in place, such as allowing more people to work from home or letting them adjust their schedules.

Remote work will be especially critical in the near term for working parents with young children, as schools have either closed or are operating on split schedules. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, both parents are working in 60% of families in the U.S.

According to Mercer, 60% of employers said they’re letting parents adjust their schedules, with 22% saying they’re letting parents temporarily shift to part-time status if needed. Another 37% are letting parents choose when they do those parts of their job that don’t need to be done at any particular time or place, in order to better accommodate their caregiving responsibilities during the day.