In March, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the first global pandemic caused by a coronavirus. The outbreak of Sars-VOC-2 affected 118,000 people worldwide at that time and killed more than 4,200. In this context, the shrinking of the economy has largely led to a significant number of employees to experience telework or work from home, a concept that has recently emerged in Romania.
In 2017, according to data provided by Eurostat, the European Commission’s body for statistics, only 5% of employees aged between 15 and 64 worked from home. The highest percentage was recorded in the Netherlands, with 13.7%, followed by Luxembourg (12.7%) and Finland (12.3%). The lowest rate of people who opted for this option was registered in Bulgaria with 0.3%, while only 04% of the Romanian population was employed in such a work process.
These figures have remained constant over the last 10 years, showing a tendency for older people to opt for this option at the expense of going to the office with the full team, although we would expect the figures to show that those who opt for telework would be mostly young employees.
The state of the pandemic led to a major change in our labor market, and the new global crisis brought us to the point where the choice remained to continue working from home, safely. A new concept, a different perspective of large companies that could let their employees work from home on a given day, but not for such a long period of time.
According to a study conducted by Colliers International in 25 countries, between March and April, 75% of respondents in Romania felt the lack of interactions with office colleagues from a normal working day. At the same time, 67% of the 4400 subjects pointed out the challenge of not having a clear delimitation between the office and home life. Social isolation and spontaneous meetings outside the work schedule come and complete the list of factors that hindered professional activity in your kitchen or living room, anxiety, and stress being two indicators of the mental state affected by the type of communication repositioned in the virtual area.
Fortunately, only 40% of respondents said that they encountered these difficulties and felt that they had a low ability to concentrate, given that some of them have to work in the same space as their children. Most Romanians, more precisely 54% of them, considered that they are just as productive during the distance working period and continued to work efficiently.
“In the future, offices will come to life and could be reimagined as true hubs of organizational culture and identity, in which the office will act as a catalyst for meetings, social connection, organizing events and meetings, and socializing. We are working on several redevelopment projects during this period and it is certain that more and more employers are now rethinking the structure of the office, respectively how it will be used further by employees, which may mean redefining office space as we knew it. before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, ” said Andrei Voica, Director of Project Management & Workplace Consultancy at the consulting firm.