Remote work, whether referring to being mobile or working from home, is not a completely new concept in Germany. In fact, it existed in one form or other long before COVID-19 made an appearance, especially among those who only need a laptop, a headset and a good internet connection to do their job. Self-employed people often worked either from home or different locations, as did employees who traveled often for work. According to a survey conducted in 2020, 36 percent of those employed in Germany were involved with mobile work. This included not only home office, but also such activities as visiting clients and going on business trips.
Because the pandemic led to the government implementing additional restrictions on actual physical meetings and travel, employees working from home experienced various problems while structuring their workdays. Based on a 2020 survey, these problems were chiefly technical and organizational. Respondents reported concerns about data security and work communication being more difficult. While problems may indeed occur, and continue for some, others have become accustomed to remote work for different reasons. Additionally, in 2020, 44 percent of respondents to a survey stated that home office mostly improved the balance between their work and family life.