Remote work has proved to be an effective replacement for many companies and employees throughout the year. While the absence of in-person collaboration has been tough to recreate, workflow and the organizational structure of workers has adapted well for a majority of industries. While some companies are itching to get their workforce back to the office, others are making decisions now that could permanently move a large chunk of employees to remote work for the foreseeable future. New data shows how a substantial percentage of company departments plan to remain working remotely five years from now.
According to a new report released by Upwork, nearly 23 percent of work teams and departments in the U.S. plan to continue working remotely five years from now. That’s an increase of over 10 percentage points compared to the number working remotely before pandemic restrictions. Roughly 63 percent of teams and departments plan to return to a fully remote workflow, while around 15 percent said they’ll work partially remotely in the next five years – an increase of nearly six percentage points from before the pandemic.
Overall, research within some companies shows remote work has evolved to become an equal – if not better – alternative to in-office work in 2020. Several months of fine-tuning organizational structures within a remote setting has led to a new normal in terms of accomplishing tasks and projects. According to Upwork, freelance work is also a burgeoning trend as more people feel drawn to a more permanent remote work lifestyle. Since many companies are now more accustomed to the tools and infrastructure needed to work remotely, freelancers have become a more appealing option for many employers.