August 8, 2020
News

COVID-19 LATEST: 15 more die from virus, vast majority want to continue working remotely when restrictions ease

A further 15 people have died after contracting the coronavirus as 139 new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed this evening.

It brings the overall death toll as a result of the virus to 1,467. There are now 23,135 confirmed cases of Covid-19 across the country.

The latest casualties were confirmed as newly published research suggests that remote working arrangements have been enthusiastically embraced by employees in recent weeks.

The study, published by NUI Galway and the Western Development Commission, examines the experiences of those who have been working from home, since public health restrictions were first introduced in March.

More than 7,000 people took part in the study, which was carried out via an online questionnaire in late April and early May.

Half of all respondents had never worked from home before the pandemic, and a significant majority expressed the view that they would like to continue with remote arrangements when the crisis is over.

The main barriers to remote working were the types of the jobs being carried out, poor broadband or lack of trust from employers.

An absence of traffic, reduced commuting costs and greater flexibility were cited as the main advantages.

The study also found employers can assist staff by better managing video conferences; acknowledging the challenges of overseeing childcare and home schooling; and by maintaining regular contact with workers who are not in their usual workplace settings at this time.

Just over a third of those surveyed said they were as productive as they would be in their usual workplace setting, while 30% claimed it had increased productivity and 25% said it had reduced it.

Overall, 83% of respondents say they would like to keep working from home after the restrictions are eased.

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