More people are logging extra hours while working remotely
The latest research from Robert Half shows how the pandemic has changed peoples' work habits, particularly by putting in longer hours during the week and even doing work on the weekends.
About 45% of remote employees said they often log more than eight hours a day and 68% work on weekends.
Many companies also said they plan to continue this new work-life balance post-pandemic. Of those surveyed, 61% said they will offer flex time or windowed-work to their employees while 48% are considering a compressed or four-day work week and 47% are considering a permanent part-time arrangement.
One reason why people are logging more hours is that it's difficult to set and maintain boundaries while home.
Robert Half Regional Vice President Dora Onyschak said the laptop and phone are near us all the time so it becomes difficult to disconnect.
Employees also have had to absorb a lot of additional responsibilities from laid off and furloughed colleagues so there's a lot more pressure to keep up with the workload. Onyschak said there's also increased pressure to prove yourself while working at home.
But no matter how many hours are logged, employees still need to take time for themselves.
Onyschak suggested "reclaim the commute." The time an employee would've spent in a car commuting to work, use that time to exercise, mediate or simply do nothing. But resist the urge to get up at the same time and jump on the computer immediately. Do the same thing at the end of the work day. Take the time it would take you to commute home and decompress somehow.
Onyschak suggests scheduling periods throughout the day to focus on key assignments so you can get things done instead of being all over the place.
Talk to your manager. If there's too much on your plate, ask about reducing the workload.
Take breaks throughout the work day. Walk or stretch. Even going to the kitchen to grab a glass of water helps.
Take your vacation time. Use it — it's there for a reason.
"Employers and employees are both responsible for work-life balance. So employers have to do their best to encourage the work-life balance and employees need to speak up and do their part as well," Onyschak said.
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