There has been different surveys, reports, countless stories and write-ups about the debilitating effect of remote working which got into high speed magnet train with the COVID-19 pandemic. Offices moved into homes, then into kitchens, bedrooms, and people were practically sleeping with work. An indisputable infidelity ensured between work and workers; when the time and resources taken by work is considered with what is left for other life activities. Then, the threat of living online and its long-term impact on workers wellbeing became apparent to curious observers.
Between 20th April 2020 and 24th September 2020, the eWorklife research group surveyed 426 individuals who started working from home as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. They also conducted 25 follow-up interviews with the surveyed individuals. This helped the research group to achieve an in-depth understanding of the challenges that new home workers are experiencing, and the impact that this has on workers’ wellbeing.
They found that working from home differs from working in the office in many respects, in such a way that it have the potential to affect workers’ physical and mental health. They concluded that the issues arising are unlikely to be solved solely on the part of the workers. But that it also requires urgent attention and support from employers and policymakers.
Earlier, the UK Parliament Lords’ Select Committee, COVID-19 Committee Inquiry, “Living Online: The Long-Term Impact On Wellbeing” had called for evidence. Therefore, the eWorklife research group responded to the Committee’s call by submitting the requested written evidence. They also responded to questions outlined in the ‘Work’ section in the Terms of Reference.
Written Evidence Submitted in Collaboration With The eWorklife Team
Those involved in the submission by the eWorklife research group to the House of Lords COVID-19 Committee Inquiry: Living online: The long-term impact on wellbeing: Professor Anna L Cox a, Dr Sandy JJ Gould b, Dr Marta Cecchinato c, Dr Joseph Newbold c, Dr Anna Rudnicka a, and David Cook a
a University College London
b University of Birmingham
c Northumbria University