GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) – If you work from home – and about 6 in 10 of us have continued to do so since the beginning of the pandemic – then chances are that you have never met your coworkers.
That was the finding of a survey of 4,121 employees who work from home by GreenBuildingElements.com that says 52% of North Carolinians who work from home don’t know the people on the other end of their Zooms. And, get this, even more of them said their relationships with coworkers are better because they’ve never met.
Yes, 58% said them said their relationships with their work colleagues are actually better, and two out of three said they are more likely to keep in touch with employees outside the office. So they will keep up with people they don’t know?
About 22% say they organize social video calls with colleagues and about 4 in 10 said their company has virtual social gatherings.
North Carolina’s rate was far from the highest percentage of workmates who have never met face-to-face. In Nebraska, the number is 89%. In Kentucky and Montana, though, fewer than 2 in 10 (17%) have stayed away from colleagues. There’s an interactive map with more data.
A student by Pew Research Center said that about 6 in 10 workers say they feel less connected with coworkers, but 36% said that was about the same. Only 4% said they feel more connected. Pew found that men and women about equally say working from home has made it easier for them to balance work and their personal life.
But that’s a different data set. GreenBuildingElements’ info goes further in telling us how we work remotely.
We threw out Zoom as the de facto channel for remote communications, and it was No. 1 among the work-from-home group (41% said they used it) surveyed here. But you are probably familiar with several other platforms that create buzzes, beeps and blings on your screens. About 35% use Teams, 10% use Slack, 8% use WhatsApp and 6% use Skype.
But we don’t know if the promise of a collegial working environment would lure at-home employees to return to the office. About 17% of those who are currently work from home said they would be more likely to return if that workspace were eco-friendlier (think solar panels and energy-saving light bulbs).