Working from home during lockdown has increased overall job satisfaction, improved work relationships and is reducing work-related stress among UK workers, a survey shows.
Around three quarters (74%) of UK workers say that the changes brought about by the lockdown has given them a good work-life balance, up from 69% in January.
The research, carried out for Cigna Europe, shows that despite the many challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has brought in recent months, 78% of UK workers said they currently have good job stability – compared to 70% in January – while 90% have maintained good relationships with colleagues, up from 86% and 82% with supervisors, up from 74% in January.
The Cigna COVID-19 Global Impact Study Cigna Europe – which covered more than 10,000 people across the UK, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Spain, Thailand, the UAE and the US – also reveals a decrease in work-related stress, with 68% currently suffering from stress compared to 78% at the start of the year.
More than half (51%) of people agreed that working from home and using technologies to communicate has streamlined processes, while just 12% disagreed.
More than six in ten (61%) feel they have had opportunities to learn and grow during the pandemic, compared to 53% in January.
Arjan Toor, CEO of Cigna Europe said that while the pandemic has brought significant stress and challenges, it is “encouraging” to see that people are more satisfied with their work well-being during these times.”
The demand for virtual health has grown rapidly across the globe since lockdown began. In the UK alone, over half (52%) say they are likely to choose virtual health appointments rather than face to face ones, 43% would choose virtual health in place of general health support, such as GP appointments, whilst 30% said they would use it for mental health support.
Toor said that since January, the number of virtual health appointments attended by Cigna Europe customers across its international markets business has increased six-fold, from 233 in January to 1,438 in April and he believes that trend is a “permanent shift”.