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Research put together by NI firm, MCL InsureTech, shows that a new working world for office-based employees could be changed forever after lockdown as the majority wish to continue all or some of their working week at home

Findings from a survey compiled by online insurance firm MCL InsureTech indicates that the working world as we know it could be transformed as the majority of employees discover a remote setup can be more productive and provides a better work/life balance.

MCL InsureTech, which has offices in Coleraine and Swords, Dublin and has 130 employees who are ordinarily office-based, surveyed its staff and found that 76% were either very satisfied or satisfied with their current work from home arrangement with 66% revealing they were extremely or very confident that they could work from home efficiently.

A surprising majority (85%) also said they were just as, if not more, productive when working in the home environment.

Cutting out the daily commute, making savings on personal spend and a better home/life balance were the most appealing elements of a work from home setup for MCL employees of which 20% said they would choose to work from home 100% of the working week as a permanent option.

Only 12% of employees questioned said they did not want to work from home while 35% said they would like to work 50% of their working week at home, 19% said they would choose to spend 75% of the working week from home while 13% said they would like to spend a quarter of their working week at home.

Those surveyed cited social isolation (48%) and communication with co-workers (38%) as the biggest downsides of being home based for work purposes.

Gary McClarty, Managing Director of MCL InsureTech, said the research was prompted by news reports that the office sector could face a transformation in light of successful working from home patterns during the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said: “As an online company with cloud based IT systems our business model has always lent itself to flexible and remote working. While we always had the majority of our workforce office based the Covid-19 crisis forced the business to adopt a 100% remote working model with all divisions of the business from IT, customer services and marketing moving to a remote working model.

“With this current crisis there has been a lot of talk in the press that home working has become a potential game changer in terms of how we will work in the future, amongst other things the death of the office environment and the daily commute. To see if there was any foundation to this we conducted a confidential survey of our employees and the results were definitely surprising.”

He added: “There are many positives to working from home including the elimination of the daily commute and financial savings. More importantly, it was also mentioned by 70.88% that they had a better work/life balance, felt less stressed and that it contributed to a healthier lifestyle.”

Mr McClarty said the findings would shape how MCL InsureTech works in the future with flexibility a focus.

“I was surprised by some of the findings. I always believed that the social aspect of home working would be a challenge, but this is offset with a better work life balance, healthier lifestyle and avoiding the dreaded morning and evening commute. I do believe this is a game changer. The future model will be about flexibility and it will be a win/win for all parties. Businesses will save on accommodation costs and benefit from a healthier, happier and more productive workforce.”

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