Women working from home regularly are less positive about their career prospects than men are, her research shows.

Being presented at the British Sociological Association’s online annual conference today, the data reveals the difference that working remotely has on men and women.

The data shows that 39 percent of men who never worked from home thought they had good job prospects, rising to 52 percent of men who worked from home often – at least twice a week.

The figures for women were 34 percent for those who never worked from home, and 41 percent for those who often did.

Women who worked from home often were 10 percent less likely to feel they had good career prospects than men who did so.

 

Recognition in the workplace is essential to career progression

Women who often worked from home were 10 percent less likely than men who did so to feel they received the recognition they deserved for their work, and 10 percent less likely to feel they were consulted before work objectives were set than men.

She also found that mothers who often worked from home were 5 percent less likely than those who did not work from home to feel they received the recognition they deserved for their work than fathers who did so.

Mothers who often worked from home were 10 percent less likely than fathers to feel they were consulted before work objectives were set.

“For women especially, remote work can be a sign of prioritising personal and family concerns above work, regardless of the employee’s actual motives,” says Ms Kasperska.

“This means that women who engage in remote work risk being at odds with the image of an ‘ideal worker’, a person who is fully devoted to their job, always available to take on more responsibility and free from other obligations. This can then lead to substantial career development penalties.

“Physical visibility at work is one of the most obvious ways of signalling engagement, commitment as well as quality and quantity of work. Home-based workers risk being less visible at work due to their diminished physical presence in the workplace.

“Although the survey was carried out before the pandemic began, its lessons are important to bear in mind as se people go back to their offices and factories and others continue to work from home,” says Ms Kasperska.