More than a third of office workers who have been working from home during lockdown want a vaccine or an antibody test before returning to the physical workplace, research shows.
Thirty five per cent of workers surveyed for Canada Life say they want a vaccine or test before getting back to their desks.
Although four in ten (41%) are feeling “positive” about getting back into the office, 28% are concerned about it.
That figure rises to 36% among women, while almost a fifth (17%) overall think that despite the official Government alert level dropping to three, it will be several years before working practices return to normal – or they won’t ever go back to how they were pre-COVID-19.
Almost a fifth (18%) of office workers want routine temperature checks, the research suggests, while regular coronavirus testing in the office are wanted by a similar number (21%) of employess, as are “physical changes” like “socially-distanced” desks (22%).
Almost a third (31%) would like the option to work from home when they want to, while a quarter (23%) want to be given the choice as to whether they return at all to the physical work environment.
Paul Avis, Strategic Proposition Director, Canada Life Group Insurance, said that after such a long period of time working from home, many people have developed new ways of working and fallen into new routines. He said:
“While lots of workers are looking forward to getting ‘back to normal’, many feel like the ‘new normal’ will never be the same as it once was.
“With the pandemic changing the way we’ve lived our lives over the past four months, I’m not surprised that some are understandably hoping for a vaccine or antibody testing before they get back into the workplace.”
Avis said, though, that some individuals will find returning to the office to be a “welcome relief” as many people rely on the “challenges of daily work and social and support networks”.
Avis added that employers should access the resources and tools available to them to help ensure a return to the workplace will be as positive an experience as possible.