More Than 13 Percent of Ticos are Remote Working Permanently

    The Percentage of salaried people in remote work decreases 7.6 percentage points between the third quarter of 2020 and 2021

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    With the start of COVID-19, the remote working modality became relevant compared to previous years, so the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC) included a teleworking module within the Continuous Employment Survey (ECE).

    The research found that for the third quarter of 2020, of the total salaried people in Costa Rica, 275 thousand teleworked, which represented 21.2%. However, in the same period 2021, the people who continued to work in this modality was 209 thousand people, which represents 13.6% of the total number of employees in that quarter, which means a decrease of 7.6 percentage points .

    On the other hand, nearly 46,000 salaried people stopped telecommuting because the company or institution changed their work modality to exclusively face-to-face. These salaried people work mainly in activities of the educational sector of the country and financial intermediation. They started telecommuting at some point during the pandemic and as restrictions were lifted they stopped doing so.

    Breaking down the Stats

    The study indicates that of the 209,000 salaried people who telecommute, 99,000 are men (47.3%) and 110,000 women (52.7%). Of these remote workers, 64.6% are concentrated in ages between 25 and 34 years old, 30.6% between 35 and 44 years old. Regarding the number of days that they telework, 13.1% do it between 1 and 2 days a week, 23.3% do it between 3 and 4 days and 63.6% do it from 5 to 6 days a week.

    Regarding the educational level of the salaried teleworking population, the majority are located at a high level, finding that 86.4% are university graduates with or without a degree and the rest (13.6%) corresponds to salaried workers with complete and incomplete secondary education. It was also revealed that 95.3% of salaried remote workers have formal employment and the rest (4.7%) are informal. The formality or informality is based on whether they have social security paid by the employer.

    On the other hand, it was found that for 57.7% of teleworkers, the company or institution for which they work provided computer or other technological equipment, while 42.3% had to do it by their own means.

    Sedentary Lifestyle Due to Remote Work has Serious Consequences

    Quality and well-being in the remote work modality

    To know the levels of quality and labor well-being generated by teleworking, a series of questions were asked ending to evaluate if this modality has improved aspects such as productivity, performance, transfer times, starting or continuing with their studies, among other aspects.

    Another element that was analyzed was the balance of personal life and work, especially in women. For this, it was consulted how much the person agreed or disagreed

    In the consultation, 64.0% of all salaried teleworkers indicated that they agree that this modality has allowed them to improve the performance or productivity of their work for the company or institution for which they work. 20.9% neither agree nor disagree and, finally, 15.1% disagree.

    The main branches of activity of salaried teleworkers who stated that this modality improved their productivity are the area of ​​education (19.2%), financial and insurance activities (14.8%) and activities of administrative and administrative services. of support (11.7%).

    On the other hand, 80.2% of all salaried teleworkers indicated that they agree that teleworking has allowed them to maintain a balance between his personal, family and work life. 12.0% mentioned that they neither agree nor disagree and, finally, 7.8% disagree that teleworking has maintained the balance between personal and work. Of the total of those who agree, 53.5% are women.

    Another benefit of the teleworking modality is the savings or decrease in travel time between the residence and the company or institution for which they work and vice versa, where 94.0% confirmed that their travel time has been reduced. Of these, 91.3% reside in the urban area, where the largest number of teleworkers is located.

    Other perceptions and gender differences

    For the analysis of the remote working modality by sex, three essential elements of the positive factors of the population were grouped: the first, those related to work; the second, to family and work conditions and balance and thirdly, to the start or continuation of new activities such as secondary employment or start of studies.

    Regarding the first factor; work-related (increased productivity, flexibility of working hours and greater efficiency in workloads); Differences were found between the male and female population because while 76.4% of men indicate greater labor flexibility, for women only 64.1% indicated having this flexibility of the working day. In terms of productivity and greater efficiency of workloads, the data establishes a similarity between men and women (between 56 and 58%) in terms of what teleworking has allowed them to develop in their working time.

    Regarding the second element relating the conditions of family and work balance, among the teleworking salaried female population, a greater agreement is perceived (81.4%) compared to the male population (76.4%). However, teleworking for only 58.6% of women has allowed them to better organize their free time, while for 72.6% of men, teleworking has allowed them to increase free time in sports, recreational activities and others.

    The last element to consider regarding the start or continuation of studies or additional jobs that can be done after the working day, is the male population that has mostly been able to start secondary jobs or studies, by having this type of work in the main job.

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