BEERG Newsletter 38 - Future Work: Where are we on WFH?
Professor Nick Bloom of Stanford University has been one of the sharpest commentators on developments surrounding Working from Home (WFH). His latest paper, published with several colleagues, the "Evolution of Working from Home" here summarises the latest WFH data, trends, and research. Key takeaways, according to Professor Bloom:
- WFH levels dropped in 2020-2022, then stabilized in 2023.
- Self-employed and gig workers are 3x more likely to be fully remote than salary workers (if you are your own boss you WFH a lot more).
- Huge variation by industry, with IT having 5x WFH level of food service.
- WFH rises with density and is 2x higher in cities than rural areas.
- WFH levels peak for people in their 30s and early 40s (kids at home), those in their 20s have lower levels (mentoring, socializing and small living spaces).
- Similar WFH levels by gender pre, during and post-pandemic.
- Much higher levels of WFH for graduates with kids under 14 at home.
- Productivity impact of hybrid WFH about zero. Productivity impact of fully-remote varied, dependent on how well managed this is.
- Future will see rising levels of fully remote (the Nike Swoosh).