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How the pandemic has impacted on work-life balance

Source | | Dave Cook | Anna Rudnicka | Joseph Newbold

  • As the trend for remote working persists, a survey suggests that people are struggling to maintain a work-life balance.
  • People are often working longer hours because they’re grateful they still have a job or work-life boundaries have collapsed.
  • Work-life balance is essential for mental health, physical health and long-term economic success and must be prioritised, write three academics.

Before the pandemic, a common objection to remote working was the suspicion that staff would disengage and productivity levels would drop. But recent evidence suggests the opposite is true – working from home effectively means working more. In the UK, for example, many employees are reportedly putting in an extra two hours a day. It’s even longer in the US.

Our survey also indicates that feeling fortunate to still be in work, the collapse of work-life boundaries, and the fear of being under surveillance from employers, have all led to people working harder for longer.

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