Work from home stressful for most, finds survey

An online survey on the impact of work-from-home on employees during the lockdown has found that work was more “stressful and lethargic” than working from office for most persons.

Nearly 87% of the respondents felt that companies must evolve clear work-from-home policies focused on the well-being of employees and their motivation.

The online study conducted by Your Amigos Foundation, a Kochi-based NGO, explored the physical, social, psychological, and financial effects of work-from-home on 165 working professionals of different age groups drawn from across the country, predominantly South India.

Nearly 49% of the respondents were experiencing work-from-home for the first time in their careers.

Extended working hours was a major grievance, with 55.2% claiming to have worked for more than their usual office hours and 91% among them complained of doing so without receiving due incentives. About 59% complained of increased workload.

Leave denied

“Participants also complained of difficulties in getting leave unlike during normal time as companies questioned the need for leaves when they were already at home. About 33.3% claimed that they were denied leave,” said Devas Boban, founder of Your Amigos Foundation.

Health concerns marked the work-from-home arrangement for most employees with 38.2% complaining of frequent headaches, 56.40% of back pain and nearly 52% of sleep disorders.

While 54% noticed considerable decrease in their ‘me time’, 41.80% said they spent quality time with their families.

About 63% reported a spike in their personal expenses due to a surge in electricity and internet charges, which went hand-in-hand with pay cut suffered by 30.30%.

The study suggested “a sustainable and comprehensive pay structure” specifically for employees working from home. It also recommended a suitable work schedule that ensured work-life balance of the employee without compromising on productivity. Adjunct to this was a leave policy that would help maintain this balance besides establishing confidence and trust between employees and employers.

Personal expenses

It also called for a suitable solution to compensate for the inevitable personal expenses of employees while working from home. Employers have been urged to develop various online recreational or leisure activities to engage, refresh and motivate employees.

A proper support system and regular participatory feedback process establishing a solid two-way communication link was another recommendation.

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Printable version | Jun 19, 2021 8:39:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/work-from-home-stressful-for-most-finds-survey/article31726942.ece

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