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Remote work may ‘improve resiliency of employees,’ study finds

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COLLEGE STATION, Texa - Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, new research suggests that remote work may not negatively affect productivity.A research team from Texas A&M University’s School of Public Health found the ability to work remotely may improve the resiliency of employees to perform workplace tasks during events causing workplace displacement.In the study, published in IOS Press, the team worked with a large Fortune 500 corporation in Houston to analyze ergonomic software data and computer usage from 264 randomly-selected work-from-home employees between Jan.

2017 and Dec. 2018.During the analysis, the company was forced to close its offices due to flooding from Hurricane Harvey, a Category 4 storm in 2017 that required employees to work remotely.Detail of a home office setup, including a laptop computer with Zoom video conferencing software, taken on September 9, 2020. (Credit: Phil Barker/Future Publishing via Getty Images) "We conducted an interrupted time series analysis to investigate the impact of Hurricane Harvey on employee computer use during and after a seven-month displacement period from the physical workplace," the study authors wrote of their objective.

The team analyzed five daily metrics of employee computer usage: total number of hours worked per employee, total active work time, keyboard use per active minute, mouse usage per active minute, words typed per hour and the number of typographical errors per word typed.

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