The future of working from home

A woman in a denim shirt working from home
Starting a new job is hard enough as it is. Starting one during a pandemic? That adds an additional layer of stress.
Ivan Samkov on Pexels

The COVID-19 pandemic forced a massive change in where many of us work. 

Little more than a month into the pandemic, a third of workers who had commuted to jobs said they were now working at home. They were more likely to be younger and living in places where COVID-19 hit hardest.  

By the summer, over 40 percent of workers in the U.S. were toiling from home full-time, a quarter were working at a business location, and about a third were not working at all -- a measure of the impact of the lockdown and recession. 

The new “work-from-home economy” is likely to continue long past the COVID-19 pandemic. What does this mean for society? We’re already seeing some people moving from large cities to smaller cities and suburban areas. Will people without technology skills or high speed internet be left farther behind?  

And, what does this mean for the wellbeing of workers as boundaries between work and home blur even more?

Thursday at 9 a.m., MPR News guest host Chris Farrell spoke to an economist and an organizational psychologist about the growth in remote work, how it affects us and whether we’ll ever return to the office. 


  • Adam Ozimek is chief economist at the freelance marketplace UpWork, where he leads research on labor market trends. 

  • Theresa Glomb is a professor of organizational behavior at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. 

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