Digitization in the world of work has received an extra boost with Corona.

Working with Zoom, Teams and Co has not necessarily welded the workforce together: the gaps between employees have recently tended to widen.

This is indicated by new and representative survey data from the opinion research company YouGov, which the insurer HDI has commissioned for the third year in a row.

Nadine Bad

Editor in business, responsible for “Job and Opportunity”.

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Accordingly, more than half of the respondents find the digital change helpful, and one in four reports a strong or very strong increase in digital work during the Corona period.

For some, the digital change has also led to an improvement in the balancing act between private and professional life;

that is what about a third of the survey participants say.

Compared to the previous year, however, more people in employment have gained a more negative professional attitude, and the number of those who no longer find fun in their job has increased compared to before.

Regarding the possible causes, the study organizers write: "Employees who consider the digital transformation to be helpful in their job are four times more likely to have fun at work than others."

More negative attitudes in tourism and medicine

A more negative professional attitude can be found quite often in tourism and medicine, but also in advertising, marketing and the media.

3716 employees aged 15 and over were surveyed in June and July 2021.

Corona has resulted in a more positive attitude towards their job being most often found by those who work in the information technology and telecommunications industry (ITC).

People with higher incomes (from 5000 euros net per month) also report about it more than average.

And although leading virtual teams is considered challenging, 41 percent of those surveyed with managerial responsibility perceived the change as positive on the bottom line.

Those who benefit from a better work-life balance due to the Corona-related innovations also report more enjoyment of their work than those who do not experience a better work-life balance or who simply had no compatibility problems before the Corona. This coincides with other research results. As early as July, a representative Prognos study commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs showed that six out of ten working parents surveyed with children under the age of 15 were able to report at least one new family-friendly measure that was introduced in their company during the pandemic. Mostly it was mobile and / or flexible working, sometimes it was also about childcare support.

“It is true that advancing digitization affects companies in very different ways. And the requirements and changes due to digitization can also vary greatly in the companies, ”says Inga Dransfeld-Haase, President of the Federal Association of Personnel Managers (BPM) and personnel manager at the oil company BP. “What is not allowed is a drifting apart of the workforce.” The HR departments have exactly that in mind and counteracted it. She cites further training opportunities for employees with a focus on team development and leadership work as an example.

But she also sees explosive power in the question: vaccination - yes or no?

"Only with a high vaccination quota can we strengthen safety in the workplace," says Dransfeld-Haase.

This is the only way to avoid a “two-tier society” among employees.

"The HR managers call on all employees to make use of the numerous vaccination offers that are available."

Home office is seen differently

Incidentally, according to the survey, home office and mobile working are not perceived as better per se than the office workstation in the company.

The employees differentiate strongly at this point.

The home office scores points in terms of independent work and concentration, but when it comes to face-to-face work, the employees particularly appreciate the exchange and mutual support and appreciation.

More than half consider maintaining social contacts and maintaining a “we-feeling” at a distance to be more difficult. On the other hand, around half of those surveyed gave good marks to the general availability of colleagues and superiors, also with a view to mobile working.