Netherlands

Majority of employees return to office despite home working advice

Even though the Dutch government continues to advise people with jobs in the Netherlands to work from home as much as possible, new research has revealed that at the end of 2021, 75 percent of workers had already returned to the office. 

Workers in the Netherlands no longer work from home full-time

The fourth edition of the NEA-COVID-19 study conducted by the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) – which looked at the behaviour of over 8.000 employees in November and December last year – found that approximately three-quarters of workers had already returned to the office at the end of 2021, as the country was headed into another complete lockdown

57 percent told TNO they had returned to the office full-time, while 18 percent split their time between the workplace and their home office. The remaining 25 percent continued to work from home full-time.

COVID-19 has had serious long-term implications for the way companies run and the way people work, and the majority of survey respondents confirmed that the coronavirus pandemic had “permanently changed” their work-life balance. A staggering 80 percent of those involved in the TNO study said they would like to continue to work (partially) from home post-pandemic.

Compliance with COVID-19 rules at work is falling

After almost two years of living with COVID-19, the TNO found that in the run-up to the Christmas holidays, there was a notable drop in the number of people who complied with the government’s rules and restrictions. While in the spring of last year, over 50 percent of survey respondents said they wore face masks at work, this figure fell to under 40 percent in November and December. 

Furthermore, over a third of employees who were working at least part-time from the office admitted to not staying home if they were showing symptoms of COVID-19, and nearly 40 percent said they often failed to maintain 1,5-metre distance between themselves and their colleagues. 

Read more about TNO’s research here.

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