More Malaysians are working from home in the current Covid-19 pandemic compared with the global average. Market research firm Ipsos, in its latest study on the pandemic’s effect on the country’s workforce, revealed that 65% of Malaysians are claiming to be working from home, compared with 52% of the global average.
The study was conducted among 12,823 people, aged 16 to 74, who are employed online across 28 countries. However, the survey also noted that Malaysians experienced the highest level of anxiety among the 28 countries polled. Among the countries polled are Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and the United States.
The survey noted that the stress was due to changes in routine, family pressure and other concerns. It noted that 63% of Malaysian workers to a large or some extent, are finding it difficult in achieving work-life balance. Work-life balance is a challenge for about two-third of Malaysian employees. About 62% polled feel that their homes are unequipped to get the work done. More than half of Malaysian employees (57%) feel lonely and isolated while working from home. It also found that women and those aged below 35, as well as lower-income employees, have also experienced the negative effects of working from home more significantly than the rest.
Ipsos Malaysia director Arun Menon said the pandemic has brought considerable disruption to the life of workers across the world. “However, the negative effects of the pandemic-related changes are uneven. Female employees are more likely to be impacted by the changes than their male colleagues, ” said Arun. Arun said people under 35 and lower-income employees feel more anxiety and stress related to job security as well. Arun added that business owners or decision makers also face a lot of pressure on the choices that they make in this pandemic.
The survey found that more than a third of Malaysians had to take leave of absence. It also found that Malaysians are either reducing or increasing their number of work hours since the start of the pandemic. The study noted that 17% of Malaysians claimed to have either left or lost their jobs.