Over 60% of Canadians would prefer to continue working remotely

Would rather work at home

Are you dreading heading back to the office? Or, have you gone a little stir-crazy at home and are itching to go back?

While the majority of Canadians worked from an external workplace prior to the pandemic, many of them have been working from home during these unprecedented times. 

Now, many employers are asking their staff to make a return to the workplace. However, not all employees are ready to make the transition.

According to a new study released by Pwc Canada, 82% of Canadians worked primarily from an external workplace prior to the pandemic. Today, that number is down to 27% – with 59% now working remotely. 

What's more, the study finds that, "while most employers (78%) expect at least a partial return to the office in the next three months, only one in five employees says they want to go back to their workplace full time."

Canada-wide, employees say they want the flexibility to choose between working from home or the office. That said, there are some regional disparities: "Workers in Alberta and Atlantic Canada are the most comfortable returning to their workplace in the next three months (47% and 45%, respectively), while Ontarians are the least (30%)."

In total, the study found that 27% of employees are ready to return to the workplace, while a staggering 59% say they'd like to work solely at home; 14% say they'd prefer a mix of the two. 

Employees report that their top three challenges are dealing with work-life balance (especially for households with kids), maintaining productivity and communicating with co-workers without traditional in-person interactions.

Despite naming maintaining productivity as a top challenge, some Canadian workers say their productivity has actually increased since the pandemic. In fact, employees are largely split around whether productivity has increased, decreased or stayed the same. The financial services industry experienced a significant boost in output, with almost half (46%) of employees reporting increased productivity during the pandemic (the highest among sectors measured).

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