The video perfectly captures the exhaustion of people commuting to their onsite jobs, sparking debate on the productivity of desk vs. remote workers.
The onset of COVID-19 gave way to a new working norm - work from home. It was at its peak during the pandemic, when employers, as well as, employees reaped the benefits of the new working style. However, as the pandemic started fading out, professionals began to have split views over productivity in a remote environment versus in the office. For decades, clocking in at work meant waking up early, taking care of some daily chores, getting ready for the office, making the tiring commute and then reaching your desk to begin your work for the day’s wages. The scenario was changed after COVID-19 but now, many companies want to get back to the old routine. The major issue of remote versus onsite jobs was recently brought to light in a viral TikTok video by recruitment expert Lee Harding (@leeharding.ta) and it successfully captured the exhausted moods of people traveling to work.
For some organizations, better sense has prevailed and they have entirely adapted to the remote working environment. This has happened due to a practical realization dawning upon companies that a remote role requires little effort on the part of an employee to prepare for the working day ahead. The TikTok video shows many commuters in a tired state of mind, looking already exhausted and not willing to work. It clearly shows the amount of physical effort that one has to put in getting up and commuting to their job every day.
The video showed a collective depletion of energy in the employees heading to their respective workplaces and the text sarcastically highlighted the current truth, “They say remote work is less productive. Does anybody here look like they’ll be productive once they get to the office?” The body language of tired people in the video answered the question that looms over the heads of managers: “Is work from the office really worth all that effort?”
A survey conducted by Future Forum in October 2022 found that the burnout rate of employees rose by 40% globally and of those, 43% were desk workers. It also concluded that the employees entrusted with full flexibility reported 29% higher productivity and 53% greater focus at work than the employees who have to report at their workplace every day. The research also found that remote and hybrid employees have better connections with their managers and the company culture than those who have to hustle in the mornings to get to the office.
The comments section had people painfully relating to the situation in the video. User @jldn_51182 commented, “Guy in the blue fighting the battle already.” Another user, @1kyliewilson, said, “Probably on their way to the office to join a Teams call.” @crowned_ciown wrote: "It’s the empty stares for me." @gg_carrrots focused on the fact that commuting to work is not given importance much: "Exhausting and overstimulating just getting to the office, not to mention the travel is unpaid and sometimes expensive or taking hours." @freckledapplee shared how working from home saved her mental health: "WFH saved my life and my mental health. Saves me 2 hours of commute and getting ready every day where I use that time for MYSELF."