DISTANSARBETE I PANDEMINS TID - En kvalitativ studie om distansarbetets effekter på psykosociala faktorer
The covid-19 pandemic has brought a tremendous amount of unexpected change to many parts of daily life - work being no exception. Since March of 2020 employers have been urged to take measures allowing for telework in order to decrease the spreading of the virus, consequently leading to offices closing. The purpose of this study was to examine how employees who previously worked in offices experience teleworking in general, the pros and cons of teleworking, and its effects on their well-being. The study aims to increase knowledge and understanding of the suitability for the continued use of telework after the covid-19 pandemic. To gather data a qualitative method consisting of nine digital semi-structured interviews with respondents who previously worked full time in office environments was used. The respondents varied in age and were affiliated with four different organizations. The interviews were later transcribed and reviewed using thematic analysis. The main findings suggest that the teleworking experience has been conclusively beneficial to the respondents as the majority express a desire to continue teleworking part-time after restrictions have been lifted. The experienced benefits consist of increased control and flexibility in day-to-day life as well as improved work productivity. The need for teleworking has also brought unforeseen benefits such as a digitalization process, which wouldn’t have been prioritized equivalently had it not been out of necessity. The main downsides of teleworking were the lack of social stimulation and rigid communication associated with the shortage of in-person interaction. Additionally, the findings suggest detriments associated with the use of activity-based offices. This was listed as one of the main reasons related to requesting the continuation of partial telework. Finally, the findings may provide insight regarding digital working methods for future employers to consider going forward, seeing to the vast experience accumulated since March of 2020.