Girl working from home

Lockdown creates green shift in workers’ mindsets

The coronavirus pandemic has prompted more than two-thirds of workers to evaluate their environmental impact, with many looking to use temporary changes in response to the crisis to transform the way they live and work post-lockdown, according to the authors of a new survey.

The study of more than 1,800 UK adults by Hitachi Capital UK showed that 40 per cent of workers were now considering greener commuting alternatives – and that the same amount again favoured home working, citing the time and cost savings of ditching the daily commute as a driver, as well as the flexibility to have a greater work-life balance.

However, although a sizeable number of those polled were in favour of greater home working after the lockdown restrictions end, one in five said they would miss face-to-face time with colleagues and one in four admitted they find it hard to stay motivated when working from home. HR professionals (69 per cent), IT workers (63 per cent) and legal professionals (61 per cent) showed the greatest interest in home working beyond the lockdown, while those working in business and consulting (51 per cent), marketing (50 per cent) and education (46 per cent) were most eager to return to their regular place of work when the restrictions end.

Robert Gordon, CEO of Hitachi Capital UK, said, “Our research shows that people are not only re-evaluating how they work, but also the impact they have on the environment and what long-term changes they are prepared to make. “The lockdown has created a positive and fundamental shift in attitude when it comes to the environment, with the majority of people placing more importance on reducing their carbon footprint than ever before. This changing landscape provides employers with an opportunity to re-evaluate their business models.

Remote working has forced everyone to rethink their working practices and opens up new opportunities for attracting and retaining the best talent from a wider pool. It could also lead to operational savings, using agile working to offset the cost of expanding office premises

Robert Gordon, CEO of Hitachi Capital UK
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