Remote Work Statistics 2024: Crucial Factors and Trends

As remote work continues to reshape the professional world, understanding the latest data can provide valuable insights into the future direction of the workforce. 

But, we have to dig deeper to answer questions such as “What is the future of remote work in 2024?” and “Is remote work increasing or decreasing?”

We’ll look back on remote work statistics before and after COVID-19 and the percentage of remote workers in 2023 and 2022 to see how they relate to emerging working-from-home trends. 

Finally, we’ll reflect on the opinions of both remote workers and employers to see whether their expectations for remote work in 2024 align.

Remote Work Statistics 2024 - cover
  • 98% of remote workers would work remotely for the rest of their careers and recommend remote work to others.
  • 66% of respondents worldwide believe that working from home should be a legal right.
  • 29% of hybrid and remote workers would expect a pay rise if they were forced to go back to the office full-time.
  • If their flexibility to work remotely were taken off the table, 1 in 3 workers (31%) would start to look for a new job and 6% would quit.
  • Over 90% of employees believe they are as productive or more productive in their work model than they were the previous year.
  • 65% of companies offer some work flexibility in 2024, which is a 14% increase from 2023.
  • 75% of remote workers said their companies help them connect with colleagues for work.
  • 40% of people wouldn’t take a job that doesn’t offer flexible work hours or requires them to be present in the office during specific days or times. 
  • 16% of employees would take a 20% pay cut to get flexible work hours, and 17% of respondents would take the same pay cut to work remotely. 
  • 53% of employees don’t trust that the company policies they had in 2023 will remain in place in 2024.

Statistics that answer the question: ‘Why remote work?’ 

When it comes to the overall remote work experience, Buffer’s 2023 State of Remote Work report revealed that 68% of people consider it a very positive experience. Also, it’s encouraging to know that no one said that remote work was or is a negative experience for them. 

What’s more, according to the same report, 98% of respondents said they would:

  • Work remotely (at least part of the time) for the rest of their careers and
  • Recommend remote work to coworkers, friends, and family.

But, why do people want to work from home, especially when they haven’t worked remotely before the pandemic?

And, more importantly, is there room for their wishes to be fulfilled in 2024? 

Let’s take a look.

General remote work data for 2024

#1: Remote work is a choice

According to the Pew Research Center study, COVID-19 Pandemic Continues To Reshape Work in America, which compared data from October 2020 and January 2022, remote work is more a matter of choice than necessity. 

In October 2020, at the very peak of the pandemic, only 36% of respondents said they chose not to work from their office. 

In January 2022, when the majority of offices were reopening, 61% of respondents said the same. 

In 2023, working remotely was also a matter of choice. In a remote workers survey from February 2023, the Pew Research Center found that now approximately 35% of US employees work remotely all the time. Although this is a 46% decline compared to data from January 2022, remote work has still changed how people perceive and complete work. 

The survey also highlights that around 41% of people whose job aligns with remote work have adopted a hybrid schedule. They’re in the office on some days, while they work from home on others.

In 2024, hybrid work is on the rise. 

With 62% of US companies offering flexible work hours, the number of hybrid workers is increasing. However, it’s also important to note that 38% of those businesses would rather have employees back in the office full time.

According to an Owl Labs report on the global remote work statistics — State of Hybrid Work 2023 — 66% of respondents believe that working from home should be a legal right. In their US-based survey, Owl Labs also found that 29% of hybrid and remote workers would expect a pay rise if they were forced to go back to the office full-time. 

#2: Remote work is a preference

Some people simply like to work from home. 

In their State of Remote Work 2022 report, Owl Labs found that interest in remote and hybrid work rose by 24% and 16%, respectively, compared to findings from the years before. 

On the other hand, interest in in-office work dropped by 24%. Despite returning to in-office work, 57% of respondents preferred working from home full-time.

In 2023, the year that was dubbed “the year of returning into offices,” Owl Labs found that, while the corporate mandates have changed, people’s desire to work remotely (at least to some degree) hasn’t. 

Namely, their survey found that 66% of respondents are working in-office full time but only 22% of them wanted to be there

Meanwhile, 26% of people are working on a hybrid model, while only 7% are working fully remotely. 

The situation looks a bit different from the other side — while 26% of companies have mandated a hybrid work schedule, 37% of respondents said that was their preferred way of working. 

Likewise, only 7% of companies reported that remote work was their preferred model, while 41% of employees said remote working would be optimal for them

Interestingly, if their flexibility to work remotely were taken off the table, 1 in 3 workers (31%) said they would start to look for a new job, with 6% saying they would quit.

This is a massive decline, though, compared to one year ago when 66% of respondents said they would begin looking for a new job that better supports their priorities and another 33% would quit. 

#3: Remote work contributes to happiness 

According to Buffer’s report, remote and hybrid workers prefer their work models because they allow them to:

  • Have a flexible schedule — 22%,
  • Choose how they spend their time — 19%, and
  • Choose their work location — 13%.

Moreover, 71% of respondents agree that flexible working hours contribute to a healthy work-life balance, which is integral to their happiness (at work or otherwise) — so much so that 25% of them would be willing to take a 15% pay cut to get more flexible working hours.

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#4: Highly educated employees with higher incomes choose remote work more often

As the Pew Research Center reported, employees who are highly educated and earn higher salaries are the most likely to say that their work can be done from home.

About 38% of US adults who are full-time or part-time employees say that they can do their job from home, for the most part. However, 62% say their jobs can’t be done fully remotely. 

Of the 59% of employed adults with work-from-home jobs, 65% have a Bachelor’s degree, and 67% earn a higher income. 

How common is remote work, depending on income and educationPercentage
All employed adults with work-from-home jobs59%
Bachelor’s degree +65%
College or less53%
Upper income67%
Middle income56%

Statistics showing where remote employees work from

We often hear that remote work has become a new normal for many people, but what does that actually mean?

What does working from home really look like? 

Where do remote employees usually work from? 

How many have moved in search of work?

To answer these questions, let’s dive deeper into what working from home is truly like. 

Interesting facts about remote work in 2024
Interesting facts about remote work in 2024

The modern remote office isn’t strictly a ‘real home office’

Owl Labs found in their State of Remote Work 2021 report that not everyone working remotely during the pandemic worked from the comfort of their homes. 

Although an actual home office was the most popular choice for 73% of people, others also worked from their bedrooms and closets. 

Buffer’s findings for 2023 show that things haven’t changed much in 2023, with 82% of remote workers choosing their homes as their primary work location

Only 5% stated they work from coworking spaces, while 2% preferred to work in coffee shops or other locations. 

Modern remote office choicesPercentage in 2021Percentage in 2023
Home office73%82%
Dining room39%N/A
Coworking space31%5%
Coffee shop or restaurant25%2%

Many had to move, some even a few times

According to the State of Remote Work 2021 report done by Owl Labs, people moved a lot during the pandemic.

The data shows that: 

  • About 78% moved away from an urban location,
  • Some 47% moved to suburbia,
  • 41% moved to another state, and
  • Only 13% moved to another country. 

A 2022 data survey released by Upwork supports the claim that remote work continues to contribute to employee relocation. The report estimated that around 9.3% of employees planned to move due to full-time remote work. 

The study focused on the US employment market, so this percentage translates to roughly 19 million people. 

Additionally, 28% of people intent on moving have decided to relocate to a place more than 4 hours away from their current residence. This timeframe implies a non-commutable distance, showing how remote work weakens the bonds between company location and employee residence. 

In 2023, as Buffer’s State of Remote Work report states, 60% of remote workers — a 3% increase compared to the previous year — said they prefer that work model because it allows them to choose where they live. 

Statistics showing the overall impact of remote work

A whopping 86% and 85% of employees believe that the ability to work remotely would contribute to their happiness and a better work-life balance, respectively, according to Owl Labs. 

But, what can we learn from employee productivity statistics?

Owl Lab’s data for 2023 shows that productivity is still intact — with over 90% of respondents saying that they are as productive or more productive in their work model. Only 7% of respondents said their current work model makes them less productive, while 3% of them were unsure. 

However, it seems that there’s a mismatch between men and women. While 80% of male respondents say they agree with their company’s mandate to go back to the office to increase productivity, only 47% of women say the same. The rest maintain that remote work has boosted their productivity and are pushing to stay remote/hybrid workers. 

Owl Labs’ findings also indicate that Gen Z workers feel the most productive in a remote environment. On the other hand, Boomers think that remote work significantly dampens their productivity and makes team management more difficult. 

When it comes to equity in the workplace, the concerns of remote workers are more palpable. An article from Forbes summarizes their fears, namely that leadership and career advancement opportunities will remain reserved for on-site workers. 

Let’s go further into detail and examine the impact of remote work across:

  • Genders,
  • Generations,
  • Industries, and
  • Countries.

Statistics showing the impact of remote work across genders 

Although many remote workers say they’d prefer to maintain their work model, it seems there’s a discrepancy between the genders — at least when it comes to the desire (or lack thereof) for going back to the office.

In the year of RTO (return-to-office), men were more likely to hustle back into offices than women, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’s 2023 report

In 2023, there was a significant drop in the number of men who work from home (at least some of the time) — from 35% to 28%.

Meanwhile, the drop in the number of women working from home was much less significant – from 41.5% to 41%.

Let’s take a deeper look at some differences between genders when it comes to remote work.

Women are more likely to work from home

In 2019, women accounted for 56% of all home-based workers, ILO reported in their Working from home report

The data from Owl Labs for 2022 also shows that the inclination of women to work from home is much higher than that of men. 

Preferred working styleWomenMen
Remote 46%39%

The report Women in the Workplace 2023 from McKinsey shows similar findings, with 9 out of 10 women gravitating towards remote work. 

But, why do women have a greater tendency to work from home?

Well, in addition to being employees, most women across the globe are also homemakers and caregivers

By choosing to work from their homes, they can combine their care responsibilities — of which there are many — and paid work, even if it means working longer hours.

A research on gender inequality in unpaid work, done by, showed that women spend more time than men doing unpaid domestic work, specifically:

  • Child care — women cared for children 39.45% of their time and men spent 33.37% of their time on that activity.
  • Meal preparation — women spent 31.9% of their time on this chore, compared to 17.4% of time men spent.
  • House cleaning — women cleaned for 22.65% of their time, while men devoted 18.2% of their time to this chore.
  • Laundry — 7.79% of women’s time was devoted to this chore, while men didn’t report laundry as a chore in this report. 

In total, according to this report, in general, women do 58% of unpaid labor, while men do 42%. When it comes to remote workers, women who work remotely take on 72% of unpaid labor, while men who work from home take on only 28%.

Women handle work-life balance better than men

Let’s explore what benefits both women and men can enjoy when working from home. 

According to the Pew Research Center findings, both men and women find it equally easy to balance work and personal life when working from home. 

Yet, when it comes to getting work done, meeting deadlines, and advancing their careers, women seem to handle working from home better than men. And, as the McKinsey report highlights, women report fewer instances of microaggressions when working remotely.

Remote work makes it…WomenMen
Easier to balance work and personal life46%39%
Easier to get work done and meet deadlines34%37%
Easier to advance in their career19%24%

Men are more likely to work 10+ additional hours a week when working remotely 

Putting in more hours seems reserved for men, the Owl Labs report revealed. They are 41% more likely to work 10+ additional hours per week. 

In contrast, women report working the same hours as they did when working in the office.

However, data shows that gendered differences persist and that women focus more on family tasks. For example, a study examining dual-earner couples from Ohio State University underscores that women who work remotely are more likely to feel the need to complete more chores than their partners. These blurred lines between work and life may sometimes lead to burnout and overwhelming guilt. 

Women report being more productive in remote settings

According to data from a 2021 SHRM study that researched how remote work affects people of different genders, ethnicities, and from different industries, both men and women agree they are more productive when working remotely.

Yet, women reported being slightly more productive than men. 

Namely, 40% of women say they are more productive in a remote work environment, while 35% of men feel the same.

However, data from a 2023 study titled Virtuality at Work: A Doubled-Edged Sword for Women’s Career Equality? warns that while flexible and remote work leave room for women to get a handle on non-work demands, it also might reduce the number of opportunities women have in the workplace — primarily when it comes to countering social stereotypes. 

Statistics showing the impact of remote work across generations 

There are currently 5 generations making up the global workforce: 

  • Traditionalist (1928–1945),
  • Baby Boomer (1946–1964),
  • Generation X (1965–1980),
  • Millennial (1981–1994), and
  • Generation Z (1995 and younger).

However, today’s workforce mainly consists of Millennials and Gen Zs, whose diverse, people-oriented, and socially responsible worldviews are making companies reevaluate how they do business.

Some estimates state that Millennials will comprise about 75% of the global workforce by 2025. On the other hand, Gen Z is considered the future workforce — more and more Gen Zs are expected to join the global workforce as they age. What’s more, 2024 marks the year that Gen Z overtakes Baby Boomers in the work market. 

But, how has remote work impacted these two (and other) generations? 

Most Gen Z and Millennials want a hybrid or remote work arrangement 

According to Deloitte’s 2023 survey — which includes responses from 22,000 participants from 44 countries — 77% of Gen Zs and 75% of Millennials would start looking for a new job if their company required them to return to office full time. 

Take a look at the survey results when it comes to current and desired work arrangements for Gen Z and Millennials. 

PreferencesMillennialsGen Z
Fully remote21%16%
Remote with the option to work in-office (at will)22%20%
Remote with the option to work in-office (with set requirements)18%19%
Mandated in-office work (that could be done remotely)13%13%
The nature of work doesn’t allow for remote or hybrid work models26%32%

However, the same survey found that 49% of Gen Zs and 45% of Millennials currently have the option to work remotely at least some of the time. 

More than half of Millennials and Gen Zs are considering a job change 

For Millennials and Gen Zs, job changes aren’t uncommon. These generations know what they look for in an employer and aren’t afraid to keep looking until they find a perfect match. 

According to Microsoft’s report Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work Work, 52% of Gen Z and Millennials were expected to consider changing employers in 2022.

Moreover, about 52% of Gen Z and Millennials combined changed jobs in 2023. 

By comparison, the same report found that only 35% of Gen X and Boomers said they were considering a job change in 2023.

In 2024, over 90% of Gen Zs and Millennials are expected to give a positive answer to the question of whether they’re considering looking for a new job. 

Both Millennials and Gen Z are okay with leaving their current jobs 

In their 2022 survey, Deloitte discovered that 40% of Gen Zs and almost 24% of Millennials would like to leave their jobs within two years. 

Things have changed a bit now, as, in their 2023 survey, Deloitte reports that nearly a quarter of Gen Zs (23%) and 13% of Millennials planned to leave their jobs within the year. So, it seems that around 17% of Gen Zs and 11% of Millennials have “changed their mind” so to speak. 

Yet, the determination to leave a workplace in search of greener pastures is still there —  about 32% of Millenials and 35% of Gen Zs would leave their jobs without having another job waiting for them

Flexibility and pay are the main reasons for job-hopping among Millennials and Gen Z

In their report that closely examined Millennials and Gen Zs, Deloitte found that pay is the main reason they left a role in the last 2 years.

However, according to a 2024 survey from Qureos, Gen Z and Millennials cited the following motivators to stay in a company:

  • Impact on society — 93%,
  • Work-life balance — 77%,
  • Diversity and inclusion — 77%,
  • Health insurance — 70%, and
  • Competitive salary — 63%.

These findings are in line with those from before and indicate that both Gen Zs and Millennials would much rather have a better work-life balance (achieved through remote and hybrid work) than a higher paycheck. 

Millennials and Gen Z are likely to earn more money through side jobs and businesses 

Microsoft’s Remote Work Report revealed that in 2023, as many as 70% of Gen Z were considering earning additional income outside their current employer via a side project or business. 

In addition, 67% of Millennials said they are considering earning more through side projects or business in the upcoming years.

The Owl Lab’s State of Hybrid Work report for 2023 supports these findings and shows that the majority of people with side businesses are currently Millennials — 74%. They are followed by Gen Z (13%) and Gen X (11%).

Surprisingly, the same report shows that the majority of people who have another job, side business, or project are actually in-office workers — 68% of them. Only 27% of them are remote or hybrid workers. 

Better work-life balance is the biggest remote work benefit for Millennials and Gen Z 

For Millennials and Gen Z, the benefits of remote work vary. 

In their survey, Deloitte discovered the 4 most common benefits for Gen Z and Millennial employees working remotely:

  • Better work-life balance — with more time to spend with family and friends — 20% of Gen Zs and 28% of Millennials stated this is the most significant benefit.
  • Saving money — on commuting, clothing, dry cleaning, etc. — 22% of Gen Zs and 27% of Millennials cited this as the biggest benefit.
  • Better productivity — productivity levels rise without the typical in-office distractions — 18% of Gen Zs and 23% of Millennials believe this to be true.
  • Positive impact on mental health — with 54% of Gen Zs and 59% of Millennials citing this as true but 22% of Gen Zs and 15% of Millennials stating the opposite. 
The impact of remote work on various professionals in 2024
The impact of remote work on various professionals in 2024

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Statistics showing the impact of remote work across industries 

What industries offer the most opportunities for remote work?

What industries are the least likely to operate remotely? 

Let’s look at some data. 

Software and IT industries are the most likely to embrace remote work 

In its Workplace Confidence Survey, LinkedIn found that US companies operating in the tech sector in 2021 were the most likely to offer full-time remote work — at 48% — and hybrid work — at 51%. 

Companies from the public administration sector were the least likely to have a full-time remote work option — at only 25%. However, they were more likely to offer hybrid work — at 41% — and flexible hours — at 32% — than the legal sector and the healthcare sector (40%).

In 2022, according to research from Remote, some industries were embracing remote work more quickly than others: 

  • Management & Consulting with 19.4%,
  • Media & Communication with 15.9%,
  • Information Technology with 15.4%,
  • Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology with 14.0%, and
  • Personal Consumer Services with 13.8%.

Later data from Flex Jobs’ report on remote work confirms that the IT sector is the most remote-friendly field, followed by:

  • Marketing,
  • Accounting & Finance,
  • Project Management,
  • Medical & Health. 

For some industries and occupations, remote work isn’t an option 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, some occupations and industries can’t operate in a remote work setting. These include:

  • Protective service, 
  • Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance,
  • Personal care and service, 
  • Construction and extraction, and
  • Farming, fishing, and forestry.

Statistics showing the impact of remote work across countries 

Remote work, teleworking, or “work from anywhere” looks different from country to country. Let’s take a detailed look to find out:

  • Which countries are best for remote workers?
  • Where is the internet speed the highest?
  • Which countries are still not fully embracing remote work?

Denmark is ranked the best country for remote workers

In their Global Remote Work Index report, NordLayer listed the best countries to work remotely from. 

They ranked the countries based on 4 different categories:

  • Cyber security, 
  • Economic safety, 
  • Digital and physical infrastructure, and 
  • Social safety. 

Denmark is first on the list, having scored high in all 4 categories, and is closely followed by another 9 European countries. The US and Canada are 16th and 14th on the list, respectively.

Top 10 countries for remote workers Points
The Netherlands0.843

Portugal is the best for digital nomads

Meanwhile, other reports, such as Kayak’s Work from Wherever Guide, rank world countries based on other factors such as local costs, social life, weather, etc. and then compare countries based on their remote working conditions and the opportunities they offer for exploring outside the usual 9–5 routine.

According to Kayak’s findings, Portugal is first on the list of best countries for remote workers and digital nomads, scoring 100 out of 100 points, and its closely followed by:

  • Spain
  • Romania, 
  • Mauritius, and 
  • Japan.

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The Netherlands and Germany fight another round for the title of “most remote-friendly” country 

According to research from Instant Offices, Germany led the way in the remote and flexible work trend during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nearly 80% of businesses adopted flexible working policies, with 68% of their employees thinking flexible work was the new norm. 

However, comparing remote work statistics before and after COVID-19 indicates that the leaderboard has shifted. 

A 2022 survey from Microstartups showed the Netherlands as the country with the highest percentage of remote workers at 13.7%. The Dutch boast a high happiness index and many Wi-Fi hotspots, allowing them to work from home (or anywhere, really) without difficulty. 

However, according to  the Owl Lab’s global report for 2023, Germany has taken the title once again — in 2023, Germany had the most remote and hybrid workers (51%). However, with 48% of remote and hybrid workers, the Netherlands is still close behind. 

Some countries have remote work regulations in place 

When the pandemic forced many to work from home, it highlighted the challenges of remote work. 

As a result, some countries have updated their labor laws to regulate working remotely. Although some countries already had a form of remote work laws, some of those regulations had never been put into practice.

The changes to remote work legislation include:

  • Requiring written agreements for remote work,
  • Obligating employers to provide workers with the necessary equipment and cover related costs like Internet, and
  • Prohibiting employers from discriminating against workers based on gender, age, professional group, disability, or seniority. 

Today, more countries, such as Luxembourg, Taiwan, Spain, and Angola, have joined in enacting telework regulations.

France and Japan remain the top countries to resist remote work 

While some countries are introducing or changing existing laws to regulate remote work and provide better working conditions to those who work outside the office, others refuse to fully embrace this trend.  

In Japan and France, there’s still some resistance to remote work

A 2022 Ifop study for Fondation Jean-Jaurès shows that most employees in France prefer to work from the office, with only 29% expressing a desire to work from home at least once a week. 

Newer studies find that the French tend to offer less flexibility to their workers. In Paris, the economic capital of France, only 7% of responders said that they have fully remote jobs, according to a Bloomberg survey from November 2023. 

Meanwhile, in Japan, the number of companies that offered remote work after the pandemic has decreased, as data from a 2022 survey done by Tokyo Shōkō Research shows. Only 29% of Japanese companies allow remote work, meaning the remaining 71% offer no remote positions.

However, data from 2024 shows some shifts in Japan — a survey of 15,000 people done by Doda, a job search site in Japan, showed that 51.2% of respondents said remote work was “allowed” in their workplace. 

When asked about their preferred work model, 41.5% of the respondents said they’d prefer some form of hybrid work, while 38% would prefer to remain in-office. Only 19.7% stated they would prefer to work fully remotely. 

Remote work across countries
Remote work across countries

Canada, US, and UK companies are more likely to allow employees to work completely remotely 

A comprehensive 2023 WFH Research study about remote work showed data that indicates that English-speaking countries tend to be more likely to let employees work from home

On average, employees in the US, UK, New Zealand, Australia, and Canada worked 1.4 days from home, while the average in European countries was 0.8 days. 

CountryAverage number of days worked from home
New Zealand1.0
The Netherlands1.0

Statistics showing the most common remote work structure

Remote work isn’t the same for everyone. 

Some work remotely 5 days a week and meet their teammates only on special occasions — like team-building activities or other corporate events. 

Others work mainly from the office, with occasional work-from-home days. 

Based on the time employees spend working remotely, we can make a distinction between the following work structures: 

  • Fully remote, 
  • Remote-first
  • Hybrid and flexible hybrid,
  • Office occasional,
  • Office first, remote allowed, and
  • Fully on-site. 

With so many diverse choices available, what have companies implemented so far? What are their plans for the future? 

Fully remote work is on a steady decline 

If we compare numbers from 2 previous years — 2022 and 2023 — we’ll see that they have changed dramatically. Owl Lab’s reports for those 2 years show a steady decline in fully remote work and an increase in in-office work. Take a look at the numbers below.

Type of work20222023

A report from showed similar numbers, as 36% of their respondents said they are in-office 5 days a week, while only 20% of them said they work fully remotely. Meanwhile, the majority — 44% — stated they have a hybrid work pattern.

The number of fully remote companies is declining 

According to data from the Global Virtual Teams Survey Report 2022 conducted by CultureWizard, about 89% of companies functioned as fully remote, remote-first, or remote-friendly companies two years ago.

Today, things are different. 

Although a lot of companies are pushing for a return to office, 2023 saw a massive increase in the number of companies offering hybrid work models. Between the start of 2023 and the end of November 2023, the number increased from 51% to 62%, as stated in the Flex Index Report

The numbers for 2024 look promising as well — 65% of companies offer some work flexibility, which is a 14% increase from 2023. 

At the beginning of 2024, 33% of companies offered full flexibility to their workers, 32% had some sort of a structured hybrid work model, and 35% required their employees to work from an office. 

The structured hybrid model is on the rise

Many hoped that 2023 will bring a full return-to-office. Instead, it was the year structured hybrid work was fully established. 

According to the 2024 Flex Index Report, hybrid work is on the rise — 12% to be exact, compared to 2023. 

The structured hybrid model requires employees to be present in the office for a specific number of days (or amount of time). For example, some US companies set a minimum number of days per week (21%) while others set specific days employees must be in the office (6%). 

Take a look at the exact breakdown of how companies in the US are structuring their work in Q1 of 2024. 

Work modelPercentage
Full-time office work35%
Fully remote7%
Fully flexible (at will)26%
On-site for a specific number of days per week21%
On-site on specific days in a week6%
On-site for a minimum & specific days per week3%
On-site for a minimum amount of time per month2%

Many companies prefer adopting a hybrid schedule over operating an entirely remote workforce, as data from the State of Remote Work Report 2022 and State of Hybrid Work 2023 by Owl Labs suggest. 

However, most employees still prefer to work either fully remotely (43%) or to follow a hybrid model (31%). 

So, the desire for remote or hybrid work remains steady, but companies are no longer interested in fulfilling it. As you can see in the table below, the number of remote and hybrid workers keeps decreasing year after year. 

Type of work model202120222023
Fully remote27%18%7%
Hybrid model60%59%26%
Fully in-office/on-site13%24%66%

Statistics showing the most preferred remote work structure

Buffer’s State of Remote Work Report 2022 states that about 86% of remote employees would like to keep working in a remote setting — be it fully remote (56%) or remote-first (30%). 

As few as 3% would like to go back to the office. 

The most preferred remote work structure among employeesPercentage
Fully remote56%
Office occasional11%
Office first, remote allowed3%

Yet, when it comes to remote work, employees and companies seem to have diverging preferences.

Let’s explore that in more depth in the lines below.

Employers and employees aren’t completely on the same page about remote work

As shown by the State of Remote Work 2022 Report and State of Hybrid Work 2023 Report by Owl Labs, the majority of remote workers would like to keep working from home. What’s more, their interest in remote and hybrid work hasn’t weaned in the past couple of years, as you can see from the table below.

Preferred working style of employees202120222023

However, the data also shows that, while employees are less interested in full-time office positions, companies are less keen to go fully remote. As a result, the hybrid model is the only area where employees and employers come close to reaching common ground. 

Employees generally prefer working from home 

The Remote Work report from 2022 by Buffer revealed that 59% would opt for working from home if the pandemic ended immediately.

The same report for 2023 found that 71% of remote workers would prefer to stay (or go) fully remote, while 20% would opt for a hybrid remote-first work model, and 6% would opt for the hybrid office-first model. 

Employers mostly lean toward hybrid work models 

The 2022 Return to Work Trends Survey by the Achievers Workforce Institute shows that about 61% of employers wanted to continue operating entirely or partly remotely. 

Moreover, 90% of senior executives expected to work from home in the future. 

Around 24% didn’t allow remote work, and about 15% wanted to return to the office.

In 2023, the numbers shifted a bit, and with them, the employers’ willingness to compromise on a hybrid work model. So much so that 63% of respondents in the Owl Lab’s State of Hybrid Work 2023 Report said that they attended training for effective and inclusive hybrid meetings and 62% said their managers have undergone training on how to manage remote/hybrid teams.

This is a massive increase from 2022 when the numbers were at 54% and 50% respectively.

Some employees also prefer hybrid work

For some employees, hybrid and remote work are “the new normal” even if the pandemic is no longer an issue. 

In its Future of Work Survey, PwC found that more than half of employees would prefer a remote or hybrid work arrangement. 

Only 21% said that the nature of their work doesn’t allow for remote work.

Employees who prefer hybrid work Percentage
All remote19%
Almost entirely remote (4 days remote)8%
Mostly remote (3 days remote)17%
Mostly in office (2 days remote)12%
Almost entirely in office (1 day remote)22%
N/A – The nature of my work doesn’t allow me to work remotely21%

Statistics showing how companies support remote work 

When the pandemic started, handling a remote team was a novelty for many managers and leaders, so they had to learn on the go. 

To support remote work arrangements and protect their employees’ mental health, about 45% of companies implemented flexible scheduling and remote work options, WorkTango’s 2022 Workplace Report revealed. 

The goal was to nurture employee and manager well-being and prevent burnout.

Buffer’s latest report for 2023 also recorded several ways companies facilitate remote work.

About 93% of employees said their organization trusts them to work remotely.

Moreover, 75% of remote workers said their companies help them connect with colleagues at work.

But, since trust in remote teams is essential, it’s also important to note that Owl Lab reports there’s little trust between employees and management when it comes to the company’s practices — 53% of respondents believe their companies will change their work policies and cut down on hybrid work in 2024.  

Staying true to your word is just one of the ways a company can help their remote and hybrid workers — check out the rest in the chapters below. 

#1: Some companies offer flexible working hours

For some companies, maintaining a flexible working environment is one way to support their remote workers. 

In 2023, 71% of workers in Buffer’s survey stated that their company permits them to work remotely in some capacity. 

Buffer’s report revealed that 63% of employees said their companies offer flexible work.

About 30% said their companies don’t do this — but the employees wished they would. 

Clearly, more employers have realized that flexible approaches could yield better results. This comes just in time, as Owl Lab respondents state that 6% of them would quit if their hybrid policies were revoked, while 31% of them would start looking for other jobs.

#2: A small portion of companies have a no-meeting days policy 

According to the most recent Pumble meeting statistics, people spend more time than ever in virtual meetings

According to Owl Lab, 33% of employees have 5 or more weekly meetings online, while 10% have more than 11 meetings per week. That’s a lot!

So, to make things a bit easier for their remote workers, about 37% of companies have implemented a no-meeting days policy in place, Buffer reported. 

Moreover, about 42% of employees said their companies don’t do this but wished their employers would reconsider.

#3: Some companies have adopted a 4-day workweek 

In an attempt to reduce the effects of burnout and stress, some companies introduced a 4-day workweek (4DWW) policy. 

A 4-day workweek experiment conducted in the UK over 2023 that had 61 companies participate found the following results:

  • 71% of employees reported being less burned out,
  • 60% of employees reported it was easier to balance work and life,
  • 48% of employees reported being more satisfied with their job, and
  • 39% of employees reported being less stressed. 

Statistics showing the changes coming with remote work 

The global spread of remote and hybrid work brought with it some changes. Let’s take a deeper look into what they are. 

#1: Overall work conditions changed with remote work

The majority of changes affected the workplace itself. Here’s what changes respondents in Buffer’s report listed: 

  • For 56% of respondents, communication and collaboration have changed since they started working remotely. 
  • For 53% of respondents, work hours have changed.
  • About 51% said they now engage in more video meetings.
  • About 45% said the way they worked has changed. 
  • Only 8% said that nothing has changed since they started working remotely. 

#2: People tend to work more when working remotely 

According to Buffer’s State of Remote Work 2023 Report, 44% of remote workers stated they worked more hours in 2023 than the previous year. 

Only 24% said they worked less, and 32% asserted they worked the same number of hours.

However, at the same time, the report states that people are feeling more energized than before — at least according to 48% of respondents. About 31% of them stated there were no changes in their energy levels, while 21% said they were burned out.

#3: Most remote workers now prioritize mental health 

Since some remote employees have been putting in more hours and weekend work, they have also started taking more care of their mental health. 

And some companies have done the same — according to the Deloitte 2023 survey of Gen Zs and Millennials, over 50% of respondents said their companies are taking mental health issues more seriously and making concrete steps to improve it.

That’s not to say that employees, especially those in middle-market companies, haven’t faced any mental health challenges. 

A 2023 survey by RSM International and the US Chamber of Commerce found that executives identified isolation as the top mental health stressor for their employees. The survey results indicate that approximately 73% of remote workers felt isolated, while this figure sat at 68% the previous year. 

Besides isolation, executives named the following issues that negatively impact employee mental health:

  • Constant interruptions,
  • Struggling to find an adequate home office space,
  • A messy home, and
  • Seemingly longer workdays.

🎓 Pumble Pro Tip

To learn how to better protect your mental health in a remote work environment, check out this blog post:

#4: Connecting in remote workplaces has become essential

Data from WorkTango’s 2022 Workplace Report shows that 90% of workers find connecting in the workplace important. 

This is unsurprising, since connection in the workplace contributes significantly to an employee’s:

  • Overall sense of happiness, 
  • Desire to be productive, and 
  • Level of engagement in their work.

In 2023, over 75% of respondents in Buffer’s report stated they felt connected to their teammates. So, things seem to be improving.

This is backed up by data from Tango Analytics — in their 2023 Future of Work Report, we see that only 6% of respondents reported they have trouble connecting with others. That’s a big contrast to those working in-office, 17% of which reported the same. 

Level of difficulty connecting with othersIn-office workersFully remote workers
Not challenging33%33%
A bit challenging/11%
Somewhat challenging17%11%
Quite challenging/17%
Very challenging17%6%

🎓 Pumble Pro Tip

If your remote team isn’t feeling all that connected, we’ve made a list of 16 strategies you can try to help them feel more connected and aligned with your company culture:

#5: Executives and employees agree that there is trust between them 

According to the Future of Work Survey done by PwC, almost the same number of executives (77%) and employees (72%) agree that leaders and employees have a high level of trust facilitated by transparent communication

Opinion: Trust exists between leaders and employeesExecutivesEmployees
Strongly agree34%35%

#6: Strong workplace relationships are important in a remote setting 

When people trust each other, they are more likely to establish stronger relationships, Microsoft’s report stated. 

Half of the remote employees said they had a thriving relationship with their direct team, while 42% said they had a flourishing relationship with people outside their closest team.

Microsoft also examined the impact of solid workplace relationships on those with thriving relationships and those with struggling connections outside and inside their team. 

They found that when employees who generally have thriving workplace relationships establish strong relationships with their closest teammates, they: 

  • Report greater overall well-being (76%).
  • Are more likely to stay with their current employer longer than a year (61%). 
  • Are more productive at work than the year before (50%).

Meanwhile, when employees with weak relationships at work bond with their team, they:

  • Experience greater well-being (57%),
  • Are more likely to stay at their job for over a year (39%) and 
  • Are more productive (36%).
Changes that came with remote work
Changes that came with remote work

Some things resisted change: Pay hasn’t been affected by remote work

Regardless of how pay is calculated, 70% of respondents in Buffer’s 2023 report say their salary hasn’t been impacted by switching to remote work — that’s 3% less than in the same report for the previous year. 

Yet, 35% say their pay is connected to a specific location, and 43% say it isn’t — this is an increase from the previous year, when these numbers were around 40% and 38%, respectively.

Statistics on the challenges of remote work

Remote work brings particular challenges for both employers and employees. 

Here’s what the data on the challenges of remote work indicates.

#1: Lack of proper workplace communication 

Maintaining proper workplace communication still troubles the remote workforce — but not as much as it used to. 

According to Hubstaff’s 2021 Remote Project Management Report, almost 46% of respondents cited lack of communication as the biggest challenge in managing remote work.

In 2023, as Buffer reports, only 8% of respondents said they have trouble communicating and collaborating with their teammates. 

However, the Culture Wizard report also found that 17% still report difficulties with collaboration and communication

🎓 Pumble Pro Tip 

Check out the latest statistics on workplace communication here:

#2: Staying focused and motivated 

For 21% of those surveyed by Buffer in 2022, difficulty focusing was a big problem, too. The same percentage said they struggle to stay motivated when working from home. 

Staying motivated and struggling to focus were also commonly cited in Buffer’s 2023 report, however, the numbers were slightly different — 9% had trouble staying focused while 11% had trouble staying motivated

#3: Working across time zones 

In line with establishing effective communication in remote teams, Buffer also found that 14% of respondents cited working across zones as a remote work challenge

With more and more companies introducing RTO and hybrid models, working across time zones is less of an issue than it was when remote workers were operating under the “work from anywhere” policy. 

Of course, distributed teams still exist, especially in remote-first companies, so working across time zones remains one of the biggest challenges of 2024. 

#4: Stress and burnout

Deloitte reported that stress was a significant issue in 2022 for 46% of Gen Z and 38% of Millennials. These two generations report being stressed all or most of the time. The numbers looked almost identical in 2023 — 46% of Millennials and 39% of Gen Zs said the same thing.

Interestingly, the primary cause of stress for employees is not work-related. Instead, an overwhelming 58% of workers are anxious about the recession, making this the primary stressor for the remote workforce.

Owl Labs’ data for 2022 and 2023 shows that stress in the workplace is increasing. In 2022, 45% of workers reported an increase in their work stress levels compared to the previous year, and in 2023, that number rose to 56%. 

#5: Difficulties with relationship building

Another issue with remote work is that it makes forming meaningful workplace relationships all the more difficult. 

About 43% of leaders agree that relationship building is the greatest challenge in remote and hybrid work, Microsoft stated in its report. 

Data from Culture Wizard’s survey confirm this — 71% of surveyed agree that building and maintaining relationships is a great challenge for virtual teams. 

When people have difficulty establishing solid relationships at work, they struggle with managing conflicts and workplace disagreements (54%) and find it harder to be spontaneous with colleagues (68%).

The switch to remote and hybrid work has made rebuilding social connections and team cohesion particularly hard for decision-makers, states Microsoft in its Work Trend Index Special Report

According to the data, 68% of decision-makers regard maintaining social connections within teams as one of their biggest challenges. Unfortunately, employees suffer the consequences of these hurdles. 

Approximately 51% feel that their relationships with coworkers outside their team have weakened, leaving 43% feeling disconnected from the company. Unless employers take steps to combat these numbers, they could see low employee satisfaction chip away at organizational success. 

#6: Inability to disconnect after work 

In Buffer’s 2023 report, 11% of respondents cited difficulty disconnecting after work as the biggest challenge. This percentage is a decrease from the previous year when 25% of remote workers could not unplug when off the clock. 

One Simply Hired survey of more than 1,000 participants revealed that Millennials are the most likely to have difficulty disconnecting after work. 

The same survey reported that they also find it extremely difficult to stop thinking about work. 

The 2023 Deloitte survey of Millennials and Gen Zs confirmed that, but the data also shows that Gen Zs aren’t fairing any better — ¾ of both Millennials and Gen Zs can’t disconnect from their work. 

#7: Loneliness and isolation 

According to Buffer, 23% of remote workers cite loneliness as their top struggle in 2023. Aside from feeling isolated at work, they also state that loneliness is exacerbated because they stay at home all day (as remote work does not give them a reason to go out). 

However, in Buffer’s Remote Work Statistics for 2022, 24% of remote employees cited loneliness as a big challenge of remote work — so, the numbers are improving ever so slightly.

#8: Fewer opportunities for career advancement and growth 

Working remotely shouldn’t hinder career development and professional growth.

Buffer’s 2023 report dived deep into how remote work affected employees’ opportunities for career advancement. 

In 2022, 44% of respondents said that their company doesn’t provide career growth opportunities — but employees say they wish this were the case. In 2023, that number decreased to 28%. 

What’s more, in 2022, only 14% of respondents said that remote work facilitated their career growth, while in 2023, 36% of them said the same.

However, Owl Labs’ findings from 2023 show that proximity bias is a significant concern for the remote workforce. Nearly half of the respondents (48%) fear that working remotely means they won’t be heard and that their in-office coworkers will have more opportunities for progress. 

The situation is even more dire when we take a look at the opinions of managers and decision-makers — 68% of them feel their remote or hybrid workers are missing out on constructive feedback and growth opportunities and that that may hinder their career growth. Only 29% don’t feel that way. 

Remote work: Challenges and benefits in 2024
Remote work: Challenges and benefits in 2024

Statistics on the benefits of remote work 

But, we wouldn’t have these challenges without several benefits to balance them out.  

Buffer’s data from their 2023 report showed that remote work supports employees’ lives in more ways than one by offering a multitude of benefits. 

Respondents cited the following as the biggest benefits of remote work

  • 22% — Flexibility in how they spend time,
  • 19% — Flexibility in where they choose to live,
  • 13% — Flexibility in choosing their work location,
  • 12% — Having more time because they don’t commute,
  • 11% — Saving money,
  • 8% — Better focus,
  • 7% — Working in their own space, 
  • 4% — Flexibility in career opportunities,
  • 3% — Feeling safer. 

#1: Better work-life balance 

In essence, work-life balance is the division of a person’s time and focus between working and family or leisure activities.

Overall, most workers enjoy a better work-life balance when working from home. 

According to Zapier’s report, 96% of respondents associate work-life balance with their happiness at work

The data from Deloitte’s 2023 report states that, although 49% of Gen Zs and 62% of Millennials think their work is an integral part of their identity, work-life balance is still something they strive for. More importantly, it’s at the very top of their list of requirements when searching for a new employer.

#2: More flexibility 

For remote employees, flexibility is another great advantage of remote working.

For 91% of those examined by Zapier, flexible hours are the second-highest perk of remote work.

Overall flexibility in work is what the respondents in Buffer’s report on remote work cite as the most significant remote work benefit: 

  • 67% say they have more flexibility in how they spend their time.
  • 62% say they have more flexibility in choosing where to work from. 
  • 55% say they have more flexibility in deciding where to live. 
  • 29% say they have more flexibility in their career options. 

Plus, employees can devote more time to family life thanks to flexible working options. 

Owl Labs data from 2023 found that flexible working location and flexible working hours were the most appealing benefits when looking for a new job, according to 34% and 33% of respondents, respectively.

#3: Extra free time 

About 59% of work-from-home employees say that they enjoy more free time because they don’t commute to work. 

Additionally, car traffic is decreasing, and people are walking more than ever compared to the pre-pandemic times — all thanks to their ability to work from home.  

The Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions conducted a study about post-pandemic travel. According to their findings, weekday car traffic in England was about 10% lower throughout the summer and fall of 2021 than before the pandemic. 

The respondents in Buffer’s 2023 survey also appreciate this benefit, citing the freedom to do what they like with the extra free time as one of the best things about remote working. 

#4: Saving money 

Another often-cited benefit of remote work is saving money.

So, what do employers and employees save money on thanks to remote working?

In 2022, Owl Labs calculated how much remote workers save daily on commuting, arriving at an estimated $19,11 per day. In 2023, that number is a bit lower, thanks to inflation — $15.

Considering the costs add up, it’s no wonder the same report states that 29% of respondents would expect a pay increase if they were no longer able to work remotely or on a hybrid model. 

Furthermore, companies can save money on remote work, too. 

According to Global Workplace Analytics, a typical company can save about $11,000 per year for every employee who works from home at least 2 or 3 days a week.  

The good news for employers is that remote employees are also less likely to use sick time, as the findings from Global Workplace Analytics indicate.

On average, employers lose $1,800 per employee per year on unscheduled absences. 

#5: Diverse options for those who can’t work in the office 

Remote work is a good choice for people who find it difficult or simply can’t work from the office, Buffer’s report from 2022 revealed. 

These are:

  • People with disabilities, 
  • Parents and caregivers, and 
  • Pet owners. 

People with a disability or chronic illnesses prefer remote work because it gives them more flexibility — 44% of Buffer’s respondents who identified as having a chronic disability or illness agree. 

Additionally, remote work provides them better access to a full range of opportunities for professional growth. 

The Owl Labs 2021 report revealed that 63% of those who worked from home during the pandemic had to take care of children or a dependent. 

Here are the details:

  • 21% cared for children under 5,
  • 38% had to take care of children ages 5–11, and 
  • 35% had to look after children ages 11–18. 

While Owl Labs didn’t provide updates to the above data in the 2023 report, the findings revealed that 66% of employees have children who still live at home. 

#6: Increased employee engagement and morale 

Remote work supports better employee engagement and increases employee morale, which is a good thing, considering that engagement is one of the top things troubling managers who manage hybrid/remote teams, according to Owl Lab’s 2023 report. 

The data shows that 32% of managers are concerned about employee engagement.

Disengagement at work is also a concern for employees — 52% of them cite it’s at the very top of the list for them. 

Luckily, Buffer reports that over 58% of respondents who work remotely are engaged in their job: 

  • 35% are very engaged, 
  • 23% are somewhat engaged, 
  • 12% are neither engaged nor disengaged, and 
  • 18% are disengaged.  

Statistics on remote work and productivity 

Since remote and hybrid work became more predominant, thoughts of productivity have preoccupied employers and employees. However, opinions are divided on the impact of remote work on productivity.

Some researchers believe it has made employees less productive, while others think it has genuinely boosted productivity in the workplace. 

Here are the latest remote work productivity statistics and data. 

Most employees claim they are more productive when working from home 

Most research shows that employees are more productive when they work remotely. 

Based on the data from a 2-year study by Great Place to Work that examined the responses from over 800,000 employees at Fortune 500 companies, most people experienced stable or increased productivity levels after shifting to work from home

In 2022, Owl Labs reported that 67% of hybrid workers, who participate in both in-office and remote work, feel more productive when working from home. 

In 2023, an overwhelming majority of their respondents — 91% — said they feel they are the same or more productive in their current work model

Take a detailed look at their findings.

Level of productivityPercentage
More productive66%
Same level of productivity25%
Les productive7%
Not sure3%

In 2024, we’re expecting to see more companies realizing the benefits of structured hybrid work — specifically increased productivity. 

According to the Scoop 2024 Flex Report, more organizations will realize that benefits like flexibility increase engagement and productivity, as well as the ability to attract top talent. 

The report predicts that, by the end of 2024, ⅔  of US companies will adopt flexible and remote work options.

More than half of people say they feel more productive working in the office

According to the study from the Pew Research Center, some employees are more productive when working on-site. 

Namely, 61% of employed adults who are allowed to work from home at least some of the time say they choose not to do so due to decreased productivity. 

Reasons people choose not to work from home even if they canCited as a major reasonCited as a minor reason
Feeling more productive working in the office61%16%
Prefer working in the office60%19%
Don’t have the space/resources to work effectively from home21%23%
More opportunities for career advancement if they worked from the office14%10%
Feel pressured to work from the office (by their managers or teammates)9%17%

Most leaders are still concerned about employee productivity 

An Atlassian survey of Fortune 500 executives showed that managers and leaders are still concerned about productivity levels in 2024. 

Although 91% of respondents said they implemented some form of back-to-office mandate, productivity levels are still a major concern — almost as if they are worried that pushing people back into offices will negatively affect their productivity. 

In fact, only 1 in 3 respondents were convinced their RTO mandates would increase productivity. 

One of the predictions for 2024, according to the previously mentioned Scoop 2024 Flex Report, is that managers will become more concerned with how work is done, rather than where it’s done.

🎓 Pumble Pro Tip

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Productivity can depend on the type of work model 

Culture Wizard revealed that not all work models have the same impact on employee productivity in its Virtual Teams report. 

The key takeaway was that companies implementing any remote work model types (e.g., fully remote, remote-first, or hybrid) enjoy higher productivity.

Types of work modelsProductivity percentage
Fully remote34%
75% remote28%
50% remote20%
Fully on-site9%

Statistics showing the role of online collaboration tools in remote work 

Staying connected during the pandemic, when most businesses had to work remotely, was essential. 

Accordingly, the use of online collaboration tools skyrocketed — making it easier for companies to communicate and collaborate with their employees even from afar. 

How much do remote workers rely on collaboration tools for communication? 

What have companies done to facilitate communication and collaboration for their remote workforce? 

Are employees and employers satisfied with tools and processes facilitating remote communication? 

Let’s see whether the statistics can shed light on these questions. 

🎓 Pumble Pro Tip

Collaboration technology has become indispensable for remote and hybrid teams. Find out more about collaboration software and learn how to use it to improve your remote team’s communication: 

Collaboration tools took off in 2021 and plateaued in 2023

According to Gartner’s Digital Worker Experience Survey, almost 80% of workers used collaboration tools in 2021. This represents an increase from 55% in 2019 and a 44% increase since the pandemic began. 

Another group of tools that saw a significant increase in use was storage and document-sharing tools — about 10%. 

Moreover, 80% of remote workers were using instant messaging apps in 2021 — an increase from 75% in 2019.  

In 2024, these numbers are somewhat lower, due to RTO mandates. For example, 56% of workers use collaboration tools daily, according to Zippia’s research

Buffer’s State of Remote Work report shows that in 2023, remote workers prefer communicating with clients and teammates via messaging apps much more than via email — 50% compared to 22%. 

Most companies introduced a proper system for remote communication and collaboration 

In Buffer’s Remote Work Report for 2022, 77% of respondents said their companies have proper systems for remote communication and collaboration in place. Another 75% said their companies organize regular 1:1 meetings.

In 2023, the situation was similar — 78% of respondents reported satisfactory systems for remote communication and collaboration, while 71% reported regular 1:1 meetings.

In Owl Labs’ 2021 report, 38% of employees said their employer had updated their video technology to allow for more hybrid communication and collaboration. In 2023, that number is quite similar, as only 39% of respondents said the same. 

However, Owl Lab’s latest report shows that quite a few employees think their companies have gone overboard with communication technology — 64% of them think there are too many communication platforms they have to use. 

Do workers feel that their company uses too many communication platforms?Percentage
Yes, it’s overwhelming37%
Yes, they can consolidate27%
No, it’s the perfect amount27%
No, they could use more5%
They don’t use any4%

Having an all-in-one internal communication and collaboration platform would solve a lot of problems for many remote and hybrid workers, it seems. 

The importance of good collaboration and communication tools cannot be overstated, as 88% of respondents in the Owl Lab’s 2023 report stated all their meetings have at least one remote participant. So, using collaboration tools is a must for many. 

What’s more, 80% of respondents also said they have lost meeting time due to technical difficulties — with 22% of them saying that happens “all the time”.

Younger generations are more likely to use collaboration tools 

Collaboration tools are a significant part of remote work — in most cases, remote workers are expected to use them daily to stay in touch with their team and do their jobs. 

However, research on generational differences shows that younger people are more likely to rely on collaboration tools — especially when it comes to video conferencing tools and workplace communication apps, as they can help them avoid miscommunication and track progress.  

Moreover, 60% of people aged 18–44 have to use 3 or more tools each day to collaborate with their teammates.

Age groupUses video conferencing toolsUses workplace communication apps
Ages 25–3486%92%
Ages 55+46%51%

All generations feel overwhelmed by the multitude of apps 

While collaboration tools facilitate communication and collaboration, all generations feel that switching between these apps often wastes their time. 

About 99% of remote workers use approximately 4.8 different conferencing tools, data from FinancesOnline statistics reveals. 

For example, 60% of employees aged 18–24 and 63% aged 25–34 think they waste time switching between collaboration tools. 

While employees older than 55 usually use fewer collaboration apps, about 40% also think they are wasting time switching between collaboration technologies.

Collaboration tools and remote work security in 2024
Collaboration tools and remote work security in 2024

Employees are worried about a collaboration crisis

According to Zippia’s Collaboration Statistics 2023 Report, collaboration should be a top priority for employers since:

  • 75% of employees rate collaboration in the workplace as “vital”,
  • Most effective workers spend 45% of their time working alone, 45% of their time collaborating with others, and 10% socializing with others or learning, and
  • Employees are, on average, 17% more satisfied when they collaborate with others.

However, there seems to be a disconnect between employees and employers. 

Approximately 78% of employees believe leadership should try harder to promote quality collaboration throughout the company, while 86% of leaders blame lack of collaboration among employees for failures.

Statistics showing how secure remote work is

Since remote work is here to stay, companies must step up their cybersecurity game. 

But, how are companies keeping their remote workforce and sensitive data secure?

Do companies trust their remote workers?

Do they implement and update their cybersecurity strategies regularly?

To learn more, we’ll look at the statistics on what companies are doing to ensure cybersecurity in a remote work setting. 

More than half of the companies allow remote access to corporate applications from personal devices  

According to CheckPoint’s 2022 report on cyber security, only 17% of companies said they limit remote access to corporate devices, while 70% said they allow access to corporate assets from personal laptops and mobile devices. 

In 2024, that number dropped to 60%. However, that’s still a significant issue, as 76% of Information Security experts say they expect data loss from insider events to increase, according to Code42’s annual Data Exposure Report 2023

Considering the percentage of companies allowing remote employees to use their personal devices for business purposes, it doesn’t come as a surprise that Check Point found that 87% of them have experienced an attempted exploit of an already-known, existing vulnerability. Additionally, GoTo’s findings from 2022 show that one of the top reasons for increased workloads were increased cybersecurity threats. 

For the majority of companies, VPN connections provide secure remote access 

According to CyberTalk’s data, to ensure secure remote access to company apps and tools, companies usually implement the following: 

  • 73% rely on VPN connections,
  • 46% use multi-factor authentication,
  • 18% use Device risk posture check, and
  • 16% use Zero Trust Network Access. 

However, just because companies implement some security features, doesn’t mean employees will use them. For example, according to’s 2024 report  — The Impact of Technology on the Workplace59% of respondents stated that they aren’t using a VPN, even though their company provided one.

So, sometimes, relying on a few elements here and there to provide secure remote access isn’t enough. 

This is where remote work security policies come in handy. 

Most companies have a remote work security policy

According to the Remote Workforce Cybersecurity Survey by OpenVPN, about 93% of companies have a remote work security policy in place.

But, what do they include in their remote work security policies? 

OpenVPN’s report revealed that the top 3 elements most companies include in their remote work security policies are: 

  • VPNs (74%),
  • Sensitive data encryption (69%), and
  • Prohibiting the use of personal devices for work-related data (68%).

Other elements include: 

  • Security training for employees (66%),
  • Password management (56%), and
  • Prohibiting BYOD (Bring your own device) (38%).

Company executives think remote work poses a major security risk

According to OpenVPN’s Cybersecurity Report, 90% of respondents believe that remote workers aren’t secure

Additionally, 73% of VPs and C-suite executives say remote workers pose a greater risk than onsite employees.

About 48% of IT managers and 45% of IT directors feel the same way.

Companies usually organize cybersecurity training twice per year

Providing proper training to their employees is a step forward in creating a reliable and secure work-from-home environment. 

The OpenVPN survey has found that about 90% of companies offer security training for their remote employees

However, it has also been revealed that only 23% of companies require their workforce to undergo cybersecurity training more than twice per year.

How often do organizations require remote workers to go through cybersecurity training?Percentage
More than twice a year23%
Twice per year32%
Once per year25%
Only during employee onboarding8%
They have an e-learning platform offering courses for employees to take as they wish11%

More than half of remote employees feel their company has made remote work security a priority since work from home began

A total of 74% of respondents from Wrike’s report believe that “remote work security is a priority for their company.”

In more concrete numbers, this means that: 

  • 37% strongly agree with the above statement, 
  • 37% somewhat agree, 
  • 15% somewhat disagree, and
  • 11% strongly disagree.

Despite increased awareness, risky behavior continues

The Cybersecurity Team’s Guide from Delinea states that small and mid-size businesses are at a higher risk of cybersecurity breaches than larger companies. 

While employees acknowledged that cybersecurity threats are a growing concern, 79% admitted to participating in risky activity

The data also shows that:

  • 33% of respondents save passwords in their browsers,
  • 32% use public Wi-Fi networks,
  • 23% have a single password for multiple websites, and
  • 13% share passwords and credentials with coworkers. 

More than half of remote workers say their company has a team or a person that takes care of cybersecurity

Even though companies understand the importance of cybersecurity in a remote setting, not all have a designated team to take care of it. 

About 52% of workers say their company has at least one person or an entire team in charge of cybersecurity, Wrike has found. 

Another 30% of employees say this is true for their company — while 18% of workers either strongly disagree or somewhat disagree with this statement.

Some remote workers say they understand the importance of cybersecurity practices

As part of their research, Wrike asked the employees if they understood common remote access cybersecurity risks and knew the best practices to reduce them. 

The results revealed that only about 38% of employees were confident they did.

“I have a good understanding of common cybersecurity risks and know the best practices to reduce them.”Percentage
Strongly agree37.54%
Somewhat agree47%
Strongly disagree5.31%

More than half of remote workers still exchange confidential information over personal apps 

Despite being aware of common cybersecurity risks, many remote employees still send confidential information over personal devices. 

That might explain why, in the first 9 months of 2023, there were more than 360 million people who fell victim to corporate or institutional data breaches, according to a 2023 report by Dr. Stuart E. Madnick, titled The Continued Threat to Personal Data: Key Factors Behind the 2023 Increase.

The Wrike report has revealed that almost 59% of remote employees still use personal apps to send and receive confidential files every week. 

Exchanging confidential information and company-sensitive data using personal apps varies across generations. 

Gen Zs are the most likely to use personal devices to exchange sensitive information on a daily basis, while Baby Boomers are the least likely to do this.

Generation exchanging sensitive information on personal devicesDailyAt least once per weekMore than once per week
Baby BoomersAbout 15%About 11%About 7%
Generation XAbout 18%About 13%About 7%
MillennialsAbout 22%About 15%About 10%
Gen ZAlmost 25%About 17%About 13%

Some remote workers say they use personal apps because their company doesn’t provide proper tools

Overall, the majority of work-from-home employees cite the following reasons for using personal apps over the one their company provides: 

  • Their company doesn’t offer apps with similar functionalities (26%).
  • Their personal apps are more convenient to use (25%).
  • They prefer the user experience of their personal apps (21%).

Interestingly, 21% also say that no one has told them they shouldn’t use personal apps for business matters. 

Moreover, about 14% believe using personal apps for business purposes in their company is normal. 

More than half of remote workers use a VPN provided by their company

It’s reassuring to learn that 51.3% of remote workers connect to the Internet using a VPN provided by their company. 

Still, about 38% don’t do this, and about 10% aren’t sure, Wrike reported. 

More than half of remote workers use a WPA/WPA2 network 

When it comes to encrypting their home Wi-Fi network, some remote employees aren’t sure about how it’s done. 

Wrike has found that: 

  • About 57% say they use a WPA/WPA2 network,
  • Almost 31% say they aren’t sure what network encryption they use,
  • 8% use a WEP network, and
  • The rest use Open Networks, which means they don’t use encryption. 

Risk perception varies among remote workers

Although remote workers are increasingly familiar with cybersecurity threats, risk perceptions vary. For example, 83% of respondents in Delinea’s survey believe clicking on an email from an unfamiliar person is high-risk, but 38% think connecting a personal device to their work network is low-risk. 

The survey also found that:

  • 81% of remote workers feared that accessing the Dark Web could lead to a security breach,
  • 73% thought the same of visiting a web page the IT department hasn’t sanctioned, and 
  • 69% believe that letting family members use their work devices is risky, 

What is the future of remote work in 2024?

The Great Resignation — also referred to as the Big Quit and the Great Reshuffle — represents an ongoing economic trend across the globe. 

Starting in early 2021, The Great Resignation has had employees voluntarily resign from their jobs en masse — mainly seeking better work conditions and benefits like remote work or flexible work hours.

Data from a US Bureau of Labor Statistics survey released in 2023 show that 3.9 million workers quit in January alone. In 2021 and 2022, that number regularly went over 4 million each month. Some are even saying we’re entering the “Big Stay” era in 2024. 

Yet, despite the slight decrease, it’s evident workers have few qualms about leaving their positions in 2024.

So, why are people leaving their jobs? 

What are they willing to do to keep working remotely?

And how many employees would leave their current job without a remote work option?

Let’s find out. 

People would like to continue working remotely

Among those who worked from home all or most of the time in 2022, 80% said they’d like their employer to retain a flexible policy after the pandemic, Owl Labs reported. 

Additionally, 53% of workers who had already returned to the office in 2022 stated that the lack of remote options was their primary work stressor. 

Moreover, 66% of employees were ready to begin searching for a new job were their employer to place remote work off-limits. And, 39% stated they quit immediately without a backup plan. 

In 2023, the global workforce was leaning even more into remote work. Buffer’s State of Remote Work 2023 indicates that 98% of employees wish to continue working remotely in some capacity for the rest of their careers

More than half of all employees want a fully remote job

In 2022, when analyzing responses from CFOs, WorkTango found that around 74% believe they will have to shift a portion of their workforce to full-time in-office work. 

2023 showed that they were correct — as 66% of companies have some sort of an RTO mandate in place.

But, does this information hold up in 2024? What percentage of workers will be remote in 2024?

As shown in the Flex Report 2024 Predictions, many believe that 2024 will see a lot more companies issuing structured hybrid work policies. 

Some employees would quit if they couldn’t work remotely anymore 

Returning to full-time in-office work is already a dealbreaker for some employees, Zapier has found. 

In a 2022 survey, 36% of respondents disclosed they had already quit their jobs because they couldn’t work remotely, and 61% stated they were ready to hand in their resignation at their current in-office job if a remote opportunity were to come up. 

Owl Lab’s findings confirm this in 2023 and for 2024. In the State of Hybrid Work report, Owl Lab’s respondents said that, if they weren’t allowed to work remotely or hybrid, they would:

  • Expect a pay increase — 29%,
  • Start looking for another job with more flexibility in location — 24%,
  • Start looking for another job with more flexibility in working hours — 18%
  • Stay, but be unhappy — 9%,
  • Stay, but be less willing to go the extra mile — 9%
  • Not mind — 7%, and
  • Quit — 4%.

Although only 4% of the workforce would outright quit on the spot, clearly the majority of them would leave the workplace at one point.

Remote employees job-hunt for various reasons 

After going through a pandemic, remote workers have changed their priorities and shifted workplace expectations. 

As the latest Owl Lab report states, remote and hybrid workers seek new job opportunities for various reasons:

  • Better compensation — 47%,
  • Better work-life balance — 47%,
  • Better career opportunity — 42%,
  • More flexibility around when they work — 34%,
  • More flexibility around where they work — 33%,
  • Doing something they enjoy — 33%,
  • Lowering stress — 30%,
  • Changing industries — 22%, and
  • Due to a move/relocation — 17%.

Although compensation is the highest on the list, employees also stated they would seek new job opportunities if they weren’t recognized on the job — no matter the money.

Employees won’t accept just any job offer

Even though people aren’t as quick on the trigger as they were during the Great Resignation, they still won’t accept a job offer that doesn’t check all their boxes. 

Data from Owl Lab shows there are 5 distinct reasons employees will decline a job offer in 2024 and they all have to do with remote/hybrid work policies:

  • The job requires them to be present in the office during specific days or times — 40%,
  • They don’t have flexible work hours — 40%,
  • They have to work in-office full time — 39%,
  • They don’t have a flexible work location — 38%,
  • They have to work remotely full time — 29%.

Remote employees are ready to sacrifice a lot to stay remote

In 2022, Robert Half released remote work findings that indicated half of US workers (50%) would be willing to quit if required to return to office work. 

The same survey highlighted that 66% of managers preferred having their teams in the office. Only 18% were in favor of remote or hybrid models. 

In 2024, things are a little bit different. Since the option to work fully remotely is no longer on the table for many, people are clinging to flexible work hours and hybrid work in the same way. 

The Owl Lab report shows that, for example, 16% of respondents would take a 20% pay cut to get flexible work hours. Meanwhile, 17% of respondents would take the same pay cut to work remotely. 

Remote or in-office — for some, the future is still uncertain 

While some companies plan to stay fully remote and others are rushing to return to offices, for some, the future is uncertain. 

In 2022, 9% of employees said their company wasn’t planning to make remote work permanent, reported Buffer, which is nearly identical to Buffer’s findings in 2023. 

This reveals a decrease from 16% in Buffer’s report from 2021. 

Moreover, 19% of employees said they weren’t sure what their company was planning for the future. About 38% of employees had these concerns in 2021. 

Another novelty that was revealed in Own Lab’s report for 2023 shows that more than half of respondents (53%) don’t trust that the company policies they had in 2023 will remain in place in 2024. They believe their employer will reduce the remote/hybrid benefits.

Future of remote work
Future of remote work

Statistics showing trends that will shape the future of work 

Although we can’t ever truly predict the future, experts across the globe have already anticipated a few remote work trends that will most certainly shape the future way of work. 

At the start of 2021, many expected a return to “normal” — a return to the office.

However, 2021 turned out more unstable than imagined, shaped by a massive war for talent, high inflation levels, and high resignation rates. 

Employment Hero reports that in 2022, our perception of normal changed, as under half of the surveyed employees (45%) were back for full-time in-person work. In 2023, that number increased even more.

So, what can we expect for the future of work? Let’s take a closer look. 

#1: Companies will scurry to find the perfect hybrid strategy

As mentioned throughout this report, hybrid work seems to be the future of work. Therefore, companies will use the majority of 2024 to polish their hybrid structures until they land on the perfect ratio of in-office work and work-from-home days. 

What’s more, as an HBR article notes, companies will also have to come up with “creative benefits” they’ll offer their employees who spend money while commuting to work on their in-office days. 

Over 60% of employees who participated in their study say that the costs of commuting outweigh any benefits of in-office work

Paired with the fact that 48% of employees say that RTO mandates are ignoring the desires of employees only to placate executives, this is a clear indicator that employees won’t just let the RTO movement go by them without a fight. 

#2: Coffee badging will become more popular

If you don’t know what coffee badging is, you’re not alone. A new trend that emerged in 2023, coffee badging might not be something you heard of but it’s probably something you’ve done (if you’re a hybrid worker). 

Coffee badging, sometimes also referred to as peacocking — or, simply put, posturing — is a phenomenon where hybrid workers go into the offices to meet the company-mandated minimum but spend as little time as possible there and return home. 

So they pop in, have a quick coffee, ensure everyone has seen them, and then go back home. 

58% of hybrid workers do this while another 8% are eager to try it out. That means that 66% of the hybrid workforce is actively avoiding the office.

In 2024, we’ll probably see more of this — especially considering that the majority of hybrid workers say they are more productive when working from home.

#3: The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) will increase (even more)

In 2023, the Top Employers Institute touched on the use of AI technology in its World of Work Trends Report. According to their data, some businesses already used AI tools to generate prompts for developing employee learning programs. 

AI will surely become an even bigger staple in both on-site and remote work in 2024. Therefore, both employees and managers should prepare for it. 

Leaders should be prepared to change and adapt their plans and expectations for GenAI as tools evolve and employee proficiency in their use improves.

#4: The hiring process won’t depend as much on geography and location 

Although remote work is a long-known work arrangement, people used to believe it was only for those working part-time or that it wasn’t an effective way to work. 

Fast forward to today — people work from anywhere in the world full-time, some even on the weekends. 

Since remote work has proven to be such a success, geography and location no longer play such an essential role in the hiring process. 

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#5: Companies will continue dealing with an all-time-high talent shortage

The talent shortage is another major issue in the business world that needs to be addressed. 

As findings from this ManpowerGroup Global Talent Shortage survey show, talent shortage was at an all-time high in 2023 — 3 of every 4 companies have reported talent shortages and difficulty hiring. 

The survey also showed that the top 5 in-demand professions globally are: 

  • IT and Data,
  • Sales and Marketing,
  • Operations and Logistics,
  • Manufacturing and Production, and
  • Customer Facing and Front Office. 

Give yourself a leg-up in the remote workspace with Pumble

Although the shift to fully remote work was unplanned and sudden, global data showed that remote work had a significant impact on the world and was a success.

Even with the push for the return to office in 2023, it seems that 2024 will see at least some degree of hybrid and remote work

Some of the most important factors that companies have to consider in 2024 to maintain their levels of productivity are:

  • Ensuring better workplace communication and promoting healthy remote company culture
  • Putting forward policies that support those who work from home, protect their mental health, and give them enough flexibility to manage their time, and 
  • Investing more in training remote workers properly and providing them with the necessary software to do their jobs.

Collaboration and communication apps like Pumble can help you streamline teamwork by:

When all of your remote work is centralized in one digital space, remote and hybrid work are easy to implement and maintain. 


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