60% of UK adults were working from home during pandemic

Employees saved £44.78 a week on average by working from home but one in five also struggled with loneliness

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM — As much as 60 per cent of the UK’s adult population was working from home at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to research conducted by Finder UK, an online comparison site.

The data was included in its 2021 working from home (WFH) statistics, with the numbers potentially even higher now that Prime Minister Boris Johnson has recently encouraged all employees who are able to do so to work from home and Wales implemented fines for workers and employers who fail to comply with work-from-home orders.

“Our research found that 60 per cent of us were working from the confines of our own homes during the first lockdown, and this is likely to have been the case in the other lockdowns we have had since as well,” Finder said in summarising its research.

“We have compiled some statistics exploring who is working from home, how working from home is affecting people’s mental health and productivity, and the effect of working from home on spending (or saving).”

According to the data, “Twenty-six per cent of Brits plan to continue to work from home permanently or occasionally after lockdown…

“Before the lockdown, only 1.54 million people worked from home for their main job, just six per cent of how many did during lockdown. Ten years ago, this figure was a mere 884,000.”

More benefits for British remote workers

On top of more adults working remotely as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, British workers also saved more as a result, Finder said.

“On average, each of these workers will save £44.78 a week by cutting out things like commuting and buying lunch out,” the group summarised.

“This results in 23.9 million Brits working from home who are saving around £1.1 billion each week between them.”

The benefits did not stop there, as Finder noted that some workers were even able to claim tax relief on additional costs like utility or internet bills, while “two different surveys both found that around two-thirds of employees say they’re more productive when working from home.”

However, the group did not ignore drawbacks cited as well, including that of the 60 per cent of employees working remotely, “one in five remote workers have also said they struggle with loneliness” and many felt they were working longer hours by taking less breaks throughout the day.

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