Post-pandemic office work: Perceived challenges and opportunities for a sustainable work environment
Journal article, 2022
The widespread adoption of remote and hybrid work due to COVID-19 calls for studies that explore the ramifications of these scenarios for office workers from an occupational health and wellbeing perspective. This paper aims to identify the needs and challenges in remote and hybrid work and the potential for a sustainable future work environment. Data collection involved two qualitative studies with a total of 53 participants, who represented employees, staff managers, and service/facility providers at three Swedish public service organisations (primarily healthcare and infrastructure administration). The results describe opportunities and challenges with the adoption of remote and hybrid work from individual, group, and leadership perspectives. The main benefits of remote work were increased flexibility, autonomy, work-life balance and individual performance, while major challenges were social aspects such as lost comradery and isolation. Hybrid work was perceived to provide the best of both worlds of remote and office work, given that employees and managers develop new skills and competencies to adjust to new ways of working. To achieve the expected individual and organisational benefits of hybrid work, employers are expected to provide support and flexibility and re-design the physical and digital workplaces to fit the new and diverse needs of employees.
Sustainable future work
New ways of working (NWoW)
Occupational health and safety (OHS)