During the pandemic, Statistics Canada has been compiling data on how peoples’ work habits have shifted. We’ve been digging into this data, and in this post we’re going to share some insights and discuss how we think these trends will develop throughout the rest of 2020.
How has the % of remote work changed?
Prior to February 1st, only 10% of workers spent more than half their time working remotely, but as of March 31st, this was up to 34% — an increase of 240%.
Crunching the numbers, this corresponds to:
9 extra hours a week worked remotely on average.
140 million extra hours per week across Canada.
How many people are 100% remote?
Before the pandemic, about 5% of Canadians worked remotely. As of March 31st, this had quadrupled to almost 20%, leaving over 2.8M Canadians working from home.
That’s an extra 2 million people in Canada working remotely.
How have different industries been impacted?
It’s clear that industries have experienced the shift to remote work to different degrees. How does this play out in the numbers?
Unsurprisingly, IT has the greatest % of majority remote workers, but it was already one of the most remote-friendly professions, with 35% of employees majority remote prior to February 2020.
- Education is one of the most dramatically influenced professions, with remote participation soaring 494% as schools across the country close.
- Public administration is another sector where remote work was very rare before COVID, with only 3% of workers participating remotely. This has grown by 891% , with 36% of workers spending most of their time remote.
An ADP report in early September found that only 13% of employees looked forward to returning to the workplace. As cases increase heading into Fall, it’s clear that remote work is here to stay.
What’s less clear is how well companies are adapting to this shift. At Cholla, we’ve been talking to leaders and business partners across industries to understand the painpoints created by remote work. The overwhelming concern is that physical separation is eroding the bonds between team member.
We’re creating a platform for remote socials to meet this need, and we’d love for you to give it a spin. We’d also like to hear about your experiences of remote work and how it’s affected the teams your part of — let us know in the comments.
If you’re interested in changes in remote work elsewhere in North America, check out this paper from MIT.