Research

Working from home leads to ‘Zoom fatigue’

28 Jan 2021 By Jyoti Rambhai

Video calls are more tiring to deal with than other forms of digital communication, research reveals

It will come as little surprise to employees who have spent most of this year at home that working remotely during the UK’s first lockdown led to people suffering from ‘Zoom fatigue’ and an increase in recovery time, according to research by London South Bank University (LSBU).

The study looked at how staff energy levels depleted while home working, and found that it generally leads to increased tiredness and a longer recovery time in comparison to onsite office work, with video calls being more tiring to deal with than other forms of digital communication, such as emails, texts and chats.

Karin Moser, professor at LSBU’s Business School, said: “The pandemic has thrown much of the workforce into one huge online experiment, forcing the majority of employees to work from home suddenly [...] with little time to prepare and adjust.

“This business practice is not sustainable and, in the long term, will have detrimental impacts on employee health and productivity.”

The study recommends giving staff additional break times; encouraging no working beyond core hours and shutting down digital devices; supporting healthy recovery through extra-curricular activities; and providing additional support to those who have other demands.

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