Credit: STATEC

According to STATEC's latest study, 55% of teleworkers consider this working experience in the context of COVID-19 to be a positive one.

One of the major changes in the job market following the coronavirus-related confinement was the huge increase in teleworking, which affected 70% of people in employment. STATEC's study revealed that teleworking in Luxembourg in the context of the coronavirus pandemic has been perceived overall as a positive (55% of teleworkers) or neutral experience (30%). Only one in seven people considered the experience to be a negative one.

The number of teleworkers has tripled during the last decade, going from 7% in 2010 to 20% in 2019. For many, the idea of home office often comes with advantages such as reducing the time needed to commute to work, more concentration, greater freedom in organising the day and a better work-life balance. These could reduce stress and therefore increase job satisfaction. However, teleworking can also have the opposite effect: communication and collaboration are more complicated from a distance, the emphasis on production control increases with the share of teleworking and the boundaries between professional and private life can be blurred.

In order to better understand the link between teleworking and job satisfaction, STATEC's study uses data for 2019 relating exclusively to Luxembourg residents, as well as its ad hoc COVID-19 survey, carried out during the crisis (between 29 April and 8 May 2020).

The study showed that teleworking experiences tend to differ depending on age group and nationality, rather than gender or family situation. Before the COVID-19 crisis, workers with a university degree were almost three times more likely to work remotely than those with fewer qualifications. Teleworking during the health crisis was also more common among those with a higher level of education, although the difference was less marked.

The intensity of teleworking also differed depending on the type of work. For instance, the nature of the work performed by blue-collar workers, such as artisans or technicians, often forces them to be at their place of work. On the other hand, for qualified professionals and executives (white-collar workers), a virtual presence at work may be sufficient. The level of teleworking also varied greatly depending on the sector of activity: before COVID-19, this was more common in the ICT sector, specialised activities and scientific and technical activities. In contrast, teleworking in the public sector was far below the average in 2019. However, at the peak of the health crisis,
public administration and public education ranked among the sectors that have most vigorously adopted this work model: the percentage of teleworking peaked at 75% in
public administration and 96% in education.

According to STATEC, the vast majority of workers in Luxembourg (82%) are "somewhat" or "completely" satisfied with their situation at work. Almost a third of workers even reported being "completely satisfied" (29%), while only 18% are not satisfied and barely 3% are not at all satisfied. 

To conclude, before COVID-19, teleworking had an ambiguous effect on satisfaction: a few hours of teleworking did not seem to make a difference in terms of job satisfaction, while more than sixteen hours of teleworking saw satisfaction deteriorate significantly. It should be noted, however, that workers who carry out sixteen or more hours of teleworking per week only represented 17% of all teleworkers or 3% of all workers before the pandemic. More recent data indicated that teleworking in Luxembourg in the current context is globally assessed as a positive or neutral experience.