Work From Home Statistics & Trends In 2020

. 6 min read

From foraging for plants and animals for food close to the dwelling facilities to working from home to save gasoline during the oil crisis in 1970s, remote working has been here for 1.4 million years.

It has revolutionized the trend of flexible work arrangements over the years with the rise of freelancing and the need to create a work-life balance.

But in 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the trends that were already in action when it comes to working from home policies.

Teleconferencing and remote work technologies have advanced so much that businesses these days can thrive only on remote teams with relative ease. It has become commonplace for many organizations to allow their staff to work from home, several times a week.

In fact, Google closed its offices early this year and asked employees to work from home until September 2021. And that’s not even the most surprising news because Twitter and Slack told their employees that they never have to return to work!

From these big tech companies to small online stores, organizations of all sizes and across all industries have had to let their employees practice isolation and go into quarantine. Work-from-home policies ensure that business goes on as usual even in the middle of a raging pandemic.

As we all get used to this new normal, many can’t help but wonder what this year’s work-from-home movements can tell us about the future.

Well, wonder no more!

We have collected all the 2020’s leading working from home stats and trends for you right here.

How Many People Work Remotely?

It seems like more and more people are now working from home. Here’s what the stats say:

  • 4.7 million people were already working from home before the pandemic forced businesses to shift to remote work. (FlexJobs)
  • In the last five years, the trend of remote working grew by 44%. (FlexJobs)
  • 3.4% of the U.S. population now works remotely, and this number has increased from 2.9% in 2015. (FlexJob)
  • During the coronavirus pandemic, 50% of the organizations reported that over 81% of their employees work remotely. (Gartner)
  • As compared to 30% of employees working remotely part of the time before the pandemic, 41% of employees chose to work remotely some of the time. (Gartner)
  • A survey of 127 business leaders from HR, Legal and Compliance, and Finance departments reported that 82% of them permitted employees to work from home for some time as daily life resumed. (Gartner)
  • 42% of workers will go for remote work more frequently in the next five years if they have the option. (Owl Labs)
  • 65% of employees are more productive when they work from home rather than the traditional workspace. (FlexJobs)
  • 68% of the global workforce works remotely at least once a month, while 18% work from home full-time. (Owl Labs)
  • Research suggests that remote workers earn salaries higher than $100K/year, which is 2.2 times more than on-site workers. (Owl Labs).
Statistics on working from home in 2020

Top Reasons Why Employees Work Remotely

Remote working lets people experience blended work and life schedules, explaining why most of them will continue working remotely even after the pandemic. Following are some working from home statistics that disclose why people choose to continue with remote work.

  • Remote workers are the happiest when they spend over 76% of their time working from home. (Buffer)
  • A survey suggests that 91% of employees choose remote work as it offers a work-life balance (Owl Labs).
  • 79% of the employees experienced increased productivity and focus while working from home (Owl Labs).
  • It was estimated that employees saved between $2,500 and $4,000 per year when they worked from home for half of the time. (Global Workplace Analytics)
  • 32% of people think that the biggest benefit of remote work is that it allows them to have a flexible schedule. (Buffer)
  • 83% of disabled respondents in a survey stated that remote work would enable them to be a valuable part of the workforce and contribute to the organization. (GitLab)
  • 38% of the research participants viewed the lack of commute as the top benefit of working from home. (GitLab)
  • 34% of respondents stated that remote working allowed them to focus on their families without giving up on their careers. (GitLab)
  • 86% of the respondents in a survey think that working from home has considerably reduced their stress levels and positively impacted their health. (Owl Labs)

Challenges Of Working From Home

In 2020, remote work has fulfilled the long-term wish of some employees who wanted a more flexible work schedule. But for some employees, it has been a challenging endeavor.

Let’s go through some work from home statistics to determine the biggest challenges faced by remote workers this year.

  • Research suggests that 47% of the employees find it challenging to work from home due to at-home distractions. (Statista)
  • 20% of remote workers struggle with communication and collaboration with their team. (Buffer)
  • 18% of the respondents find it difficult to unplug after working from home. (Buffer)
  • While working from home, 35% of employees feel isolated and lonely as they cannot interact with their colleagues. (Statista)
  • Remote workers struggle the most with the hybrid meetings; 67% found interruptions during meeting distracting, while 59% had IT issues during the remote sessions. (Owl Labs)
  • 29% of remote workers report a lack of motivation, while 24% think that remote work hinders their network and career development. (Statista)
  • 62% of the remote workers want their employers to offer better tech to help them stay connected with the office. (MerchantSavvy)

The Effect Of Work from Home On Productivity

Productivity and efficiency remain the top concerns of businesses whenever they plan to develop policies regarding work from home.

Here are some remote working statistics that might surprise you:

  • 13% of the employees are more productive while working from home, and it has been observed that they take fewer leaves or days off. (MerchantSavvy)
  • It has been estimated that the US alone can save $4.5 billion in savings per year due to the increase in productivity and a decrease in overhead costs due to remote working. (MerchantSavvy)
  • 91% of the participants state that flexible work schedules increase their morale. (FlexJobs)
  • 85% of businesses report that increased flexibility in the employees’ work schedules has led to increased productivity. (FlexJobs)
  • 45% of the respondents in a study believe that they got more done while working from home. (Robert Walters)
  • 29% of the employees got more work by utilizing the commute time that enhanced their productivity. (Robert Walters)
  • Due to the unexpected shift to remote work, 70% of managers report that working from home improved or maintained their team’s performance. (Global Workplace Analytics)
Working from home stats 2020

Positions Held By Remote Workers

The following are some remote work statistics on remote working when it comes to certain job positions.

  • 18% of executives across all industries worked remotely one day per week. (MerchantSavvy)
  • Among the remote workers of a company, 55% were founders or C-level executives, while 48% were from the VP level. (MerchantSavvy)
  • Remote working is preferred by senior staff that is further up the career ladder. (MerchantSavvy)
  • A study shows that 16% of the telecommuters were from the management, 14% from the office and administrative support, 13% from sales and related departments, 9% from business and financial operations, while 9% were from computer-related departments. (Fundera)
  • Another research shows that 18% of the remote work participation came from IT operations, 9% came from financial services, 14% from customer service, and 11% from the administrative staff. (Owl Labs)
  • 15% of the health care industry, 10% of the technology sector, 9% financial services, 8% education sector, and 7% of manufacturing industries prefer to work from home. (Owl Labs)

Work From Home Statistics For Recruiting And Retention

Among its many other benefits, remote working has led to greater happiness and loyalty among employees, resulting in greater retention. It has given rise to more data on how workers feel about remote work and their commitment to a company.

Let’s browse through some work from home stats regarding employee recruitment and retention.

  • Remote workers are prone to staying with their current job for the next five years, 13% more than office workers. (Owl Labs)
  • 10% of global businesses experienced a boost in employee retention in 2020 when they offered flexible schedules. (MerchantSavvy)
  • 61% of employees left their job due to a lack of flexibility in work. (MerchantSavvy)
  • Research suggests that 76% of the workers will be more loyal to their employers if they were granted remote working options. (MerchantSavvy)
  • 80% of U.S. workers state that they are more likely to reject a job that does not offer flexible working. More than a third say that they will prioritize flexible jobs over bigger job positions. (International Workplace Group)
  • Research suggests that almost three-fourth of the participants deemed remote work the best non-monetary strategy to retain employees. (Crain’s NewYork)

In Conclusion

As the world continues to embrace the idea of remote work, businesses are just beginning to understand that work from home comes with its own set of benefits and challenges.

The above-mentioned remote working stats are a clear testament that this phenomenon is not only here to stay but will become more prevalent with time.