Working from home has become the norm for many in the last two years since the global pandemic broke out. While staying home and telecommuting saved many businesses from going bust, it also gave remote workers a way to find distractions from work that are ever-present in their homes.
According to this survey, those who are working from home have found many ways to get distracted during business hours. For instance, the biggest distraction for those working from home is mobile phones (56% of surveyed workers from home have said so).
Remote workers identify the biggest distractions for WFH
When working from home, there are many things inside a household that can keep the workers preoccupied that are not connected to their work tasks. First of many is the mobile phone, identified as the biggest distraction for 56% of polled remote workers.
Apart from mobile phones, just over four in 10 (44%) also say that social media is their distraction from work when telecommuting from their homes. Right after that, 40% report that people they live with distract them the most during business hours from home. Also, 27% report pets as a distraction, while 14% blame incoming calls for getting distracted from work.
Social media usage for non-work related purposes
Many of those who work from home find themselves scrolling through social media when they should be working. As a matter of fact, there are different social media platforms that remote workers are claiming to be distracted by when working.
For instance, 66% of surveyed participants say they use Facebook for non-work-related purposes during office hours. Also, Instagram is used for the same reason when working from home by 52%. Moreover, 48% say that Youtube is the social media platform they use during working hours but that is not connected to their work tasks.
Among other social media platforms, remote workers have also identified Twitter (24%), TikTok (14%), and Snapchat (12%) as distractions from work when working from home.
When asked about how long those who work from home spend social media during office hours – here is what they said. For one in four, under 30 minutes of the working hours is spent on using social media for things that are not work-related. Also, 30% of them use social media for 30 minutes to one hour. Finally, 28% stated that they spend over an hour using social media unrelated to work.
On-demand streaming services such as Netflix are also very much distracting workers from their work tasks. According to the survey results, 55% of surveyed workers watch on-demand streaming services such as Netflix during working hours when they are supposed to be working instead.
What other distractions are there for remote workers?
When working from home, it is not just technology that comes in the way of workers’ productivity. Besides that, people admit they cook, take their dogs for a walk, take care of their children, and more, all while working from home.
For instance, 67% of survey participants also said that they cook during working hours when they should be working instead. One in four also walks their dog during business hours. Out of all dog parents, 35% walk their dogs during their shift from home every day.
Around one in three (33%) of those who work from home also go shopping and 30% also go for a drink or to grab a coffee during work.
However, the biggest distraction of all seems to be the house chores. As it turns out, almost eight in 10 workers from home (77%) do house chores while working from home. Out of those, 34% spend under half an hour doing house chores.
For those who are parents and working from home, it is also not easy to work from home and care for their children at the same time. In reality, around one in three of the polled remote workers (31%) who are parents take care of their children during working hours.
While there are many distractions in the office preventing workers from getting their work done, home is no exception. This is even more as workers’ homes are not just working sites but also the place where other parts of their life happen, sometimes at the same time as work, too. However, many studies suggest that those who work from home are also more productive than when they work on-site.
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