Third of people working from home have to go to office for Zoom meetings - Essex Live

Summary

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A new survey conducted by National Broadband has shown that almost a third (31%) of those who could otherwise work from home in the UK, are having to travel into the office for important Zoom meetings due to poor broadband speeds. Additionally, over a quarter (27%) of remote workers say their current broadband performance hampers their ability to work from home.

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A new survey conducted by National Broadband has shown that almost a third (31%) of those who could otherwise work from home in the UK, are having to travel into the office for important Zoom meetings due to poor broadband speeds. Additionally, over a quarter (27%) of remote workers say their current broadband performance hampers their ability to work from home.

The new phenomenon of the ‘ Zoom Commuter’ highlights the changing nature of work for Brits and the increasing importance of access to high speed broadband. 50% of respondents stated their reliance on broadband had increased during the pandemic and 30% said remote working was their most important use of their broadband from home.

The parts of the UK with the most ‘Zoom Commuters’ are as follows:

London (42%) Wales (38%) Yorkshire & the Humber (36%) West Midlands (32%) South-East (28%)

Marcus Prouse who works in local government in Taunton Somerset, was one such ‘Zoom Commuter’, he said: “With both my partner and I working remotely, we really struggled due to our slow internet connection. I would frequently have to go into the office and would never take the risk of using my home broadband for important Zoom meetings. It was ultimately a really frustrating experience and not being able to have the flexibility offered by remote working definitely had an impact on our quality of life.”

The UK’s first lockdown in April saw almost half of UK workers work from home. According to the ONS, 84% of people that worked from home now plan to carry out a mix of working from home and in the office, with the majority planning to predominantly work from home.

This is even more relevant, given the continued cost of living crisis, since the need to travel into the office rather than work from home imposes yet more strain on already tightened UK household budgets.. As data from the ONS revealed, 50% of people reported spending less on fuel whilst working from home during the pandemic. Plus with an increasing focus on climate change and lowering carbon footprints, there are further environmental benefits to reducing commuting journeys.

Slow and unreliable broadband is having the greatest impact on younger generations' ability to work from home. 39% of 16-29 year olds, and 33% of 30-44 year olds who could work from home say poor broadband makes this difficult. Those within such demographics are often raising young families and therefore feeling the impacts of the cost of living crisis most acutely. Adding increased travel costs due to poor broadband on top of this has the potential to have significant financial impact on these households

David Hennell, Business Development Director at National Broadband said: “The pandemic has irreversibly changed our working lives and access to fast and reliable broadband is now an absolute necessity. The rise of the ‘Zoom Commuter’ is extremely concerning as those whose jobs allow hybrid working should have the ability to work equally effectively from their home or the office. As the cost of living crisis continues to cast a dark shadow across people’s lives, improving the country’s access to broadband must be prioritised.”

The research follows National Broadband’s recent Entitledto10 campaign, which aims to raise awareness of consumers' right to request access to decent broadband. National Broadband has provided a broadband speed test, for broadband users to check their speeds if they are struggling to work from home.

Third of people working from home have to go to office for Zoom meetings - Essex Live
Photo Credit: Essex Live

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