We’re working longer hours, Uber is embracing remote work, the 10 most popular entry level jobs for graduates, how to build working culture during pandemic and why Gen Z are struggling to remain productive – these are the five trending stories from the world of work this week.

#1. The pandemic workday is 48 minutes longer and has more (albeit shorter) meetings

 

Have you been working these past months remotely and feel your workday has gradually grown longer? It may well be more than just a feeling! According to an extensive study by the US National Bureau of Economic Research, it turns out employees work on average 48 minutes per day more than before the coronavirus pandemic. Based on the meta-data of more than 3 million people from North America, Europe, and the Middle East, the working paper also finds that the number of meetings per person has increased by 12.9%, but the length of those has shortened by a fifth.

Due to COVID-19, our workdays have grown longer and we’re having more meetings. Photo by Ali Yahya on Unsplash

#2. Uber will let employees work from home until end of June 2021

 

Another week and another company that has announced it will re-consider its work-from-home policy. Following a host of other (mostly tech) companies that have recently come out in favour of remote work, Uber will now let its employees work from home until the end of June 2021. While Google, Facebook, Amazon, or Apple are merely extending the option for people to work remotely until some time next year, Twitter had previously announced it would make the changes permanent. In the meantime, Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella has warned that companies should not be replacing one dogma with another, suggesting working from the office has its advantages. According to our global research, the best way to balance remote work and working from the office is to split the time 50-50.

Many tech companies have announced they would continue their ‘work from home’ policy. Photo by Pawel Chu on Unsplash

#3. The top 10 entry-level jobs for recent college graduates during COVID-19

 

Are you a recent graduate or are about to graduate? Or you’re just curious to know what entry-level jobs there are out there in these difficult times? Fit Small Business, a research firm focused on small business owners, has put together a list of 10 positions that are most accessible to those with a degree and entering the labour market. The jobs vary in terms of pay and type and include positions such as store associates, data specialists, tutors, or web developers. Perhaps unsurprising during the COVID-19 pandemic, the list is topped by the position of ‘contact tracer’, which could earn a graduate $55,000 per year. Read more in this Business Insider article.

Contact tracer, data specialists or store associates – these are some of the most accessible entry-job positions for recent graduates. Photo by Andre Hunter on Unsplash

#4. When working remotely, workplace culture is built outside of work

 

One of the biggest challenges facing managers and leaders of teams working remotely has been building and sustaining work culture. Darren Murph, the expert on remote work and remote transformations, explains in his article that in times like these, when people are under increased pressure due to COVID-19, leaders should use the moment to elevate their company values. The best way to do so, however, is not to impose this from the top-down, but rather to open the values up for everyone to contribute ideas. Workplace culture is built outside of work, through people’s engagement in local neighbourhoods and communities. These examples of lived out values by the employees then positively affect and bring culture to work.

Workplace culture is built outside of work, through people’s engagement in local neighbourhoods and communities. Photo by Nicholas Bartos on Unsplash

#5. Gen Z is struggling to be productive working from home


43% of those aged 18 to 24 have said their productivity has decreased since they started working remotely. This might come as a surprise, given than Gen Zers have the reputation of being most tech-savvy. However, the findings of the Fortune-SurveyMonkey poll reflect the fact that most of these workers are still early in their career, and they find working remotely challenging due to lack of in-person direction or face-to-face interaction. For more on the survey, read here.

43% of those aged 18 to 24 have said their productivity has decreased since they started working remotely

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