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Home sweet home: Almost three quarters of workers in financial services rate their working from home experience as positive

26 May 2020

  • Not having to commute considered top reason for a positive experience;
  • More than three quarters felt they are as or more productive working from home during the lockdown;
  • Triple the number of people expect to work from home more than twice a week post-lockdown.

Almost three quarters (70%) of employees working in financial services rate their working from home experience as positive, according to a new survey from Deloitte.

The Future of the City survey sought to understand how financial services employees – including those in banking, investment management and insurance – have adapted to working from home since the country was brought into lockdown following the outbreak of COVID-19. It found that only one in ten (10%) have had a negative experience.

When asked what makes the experience positive, more than three quarters (76%) cited not having to commute as the top reason. This was followed by having more flexibility (43%), being able to spend more time with the family (39%) and having more time to exercise (28%). Employee wellbeing has also taken a positive turn with more than a third (36%) stating their wellbeing has improved during lockdown, against just under a quarter (24%) who said it has worsened.

Of those who rated the experience as negative, over half (51%) suggested it was due to having less in-person interactions, followed by to the challenges of maintain a work-life balance (41%).

Additionally, more than three quarters (76%) of respondents felt they are as or more productive working from home during the lockdown. This is largely due to less time commuting to and from work (72%), followed by fewer distractions (54%) and a quieter working environment (52%).

Margaret Doyle, financial services partner at Deloitte said: “Against the a backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, the lockdown and all the challenges of home working – from health and financial anxieties to childcare – it is perhaps surprising that financial services employees are finding remote working so positive. But given ways of working are likely to be constrained for a while, this is good news. Longer term, this forced home-working experiment offers the industry a chance to reflect on its ways of working.”

Great expectations

Although more than half (55%) expect their employer to re-open offices by September, working patterns are set to change. The survey revealed that the portion of financial services employees who expect to work from home at least once a week after lockdown ends almost doubled from 41% to 77%. Meanwhile the proportion of those who expect to work from home more than two days a week has jumped from 12% to 43%.

With increased expectations to work from home, employees shared thoughts on what would improve their experience. Almost half of those surveyed (44%) said wellbeing tools – such as reminders to take breaks – would help.

Additionally, there is a gap in remote working tools available to employees with fewer than half (45%) having and using online video applications, just over a third (35%) using wellbeing tools and less than a third (30%) getting training on how to use new technology from home.

Richard Hammell, UK financial services leader at Deloitte said: “Even with the extensive use of advanced technology and offshore operations, the activities of the City have centred on direct, in-person working patterns. That model was changing before the lockdown but is now irresistible. The specific in-person aspects of office life most valued by our respondents will never disappear. However, the City will need to use this experience to reconsider the employee proposition that underpins the financial services industries. Far from being the death of the City – it’s a chance to shape it for the future.”


Note to editors
The survey was conducted by YouGov on behalf of Deloitte between 5th and 11th May 2020. A total of 501 individuals working in financial services including: retail and investment banking, wealth management, investment management, insurance corporate banking, commercial banking and FinTech who live in London or the Home Counties completed an online survey about their experiences of working from home. Roles of those who participated include front office, research, finance, risk management, sales and marketing among others.

About Deloitte
In this press release references to “Deloitte” are references to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”) a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity.

Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

Deloitte LLP is a subsidiary of Deloitte NWE LLP, which is a member firm of DTTL, and is among the UK's leading professional services firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

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