Nearly Two-Thirds Would Choose Better Work-Life Balance Over Better Pay

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FlexJobs survey highlights the depth and far-ranging benefits of remote and hybrid work

Boulder, CO, August 29, 2022—According to FlexJobs’ Career Pulse 2022 Survey* of over 4,000 professionals, 63% said if given the option, they would choose better work-life balance over better pay. Less than one-third (31%) would choose better pay over better work-life balance. The specific numbers below illustrate the heavy leaning toward better work-life balance over better pay. If they had to choose between the two, respondents say they prefer:

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  • Definitely better work-life balance (44%)
  • Probably better work-life balance (19%)
  • Definitely better pay (15%)
  • Probably better pay (16%)
  • Not sure (6%)

Eighty-seven percent also said that having a remote or hybrid job has improved or would improve their work-life balance. Given the above, it’s not surprising that only 3% want to work in the office full-time.

Sixty-five percent said their ideal work arrangement was 100% remote work, and 32% want a hybrid workplace. Fifty-seven percent went so far as to say that if they were not allowed to keep working remotely in their current position, they would look for a new job.

"From time and financial savings to increased productivity, remote work provides many valuable benefits for employees––but work-life balance is king," said Sara Sutton, Founder and CEO of FlexJobs. "Healthy work-life balance can be instrumental to the success and longevity of an organization, and as reaffirmed in our latest report, a top priority for today’s workers and job seekers. We hope FlexJobs’ latest findings demonstrate the important role job flexibility plays in helping employees strike the right balance between their personal and professional lives," Sutton concluded.

Other reported benefits of remote and hybrid work:

  • Cost savings: 45% estimate they save at least $5,000 a year by working remotely, with one in five estimating a cost savings of over $10,000 per year by working remotely (from not eating out, no gas, dry cleaning, etc). And 29% estimate they save at least $2,600 a year.
  • Happiness: 84% said having a remote or hybrid job makes or would make them a happier person in general.
  • Mental Health: For those who have mental health issues, 77% think having a remote or hybrid job has or would help them manage their mental health issues.

With many job seekers pursuing permanent remote work arrangements, FlexJobs’ Career Coaching team has shared their best practices to stay productive, alleviate stress, avoid burnout, and achieve better work-life balance as a remote worker.

6 Ways Remote Workers Can Practice Better Work-Life Balance

  1. Set Boundaries and a Schedule

Creating boundaries and sticking to a regular schedule can help maintain productivity and ease some of the stress that comes from working. Employees should set work hours and log off at the end of each scheduled workday to help with focusing on other things outside of work. When work hours have a beginning and an end, it’s easier to set boundaries with family members, coworkers, and managers.

  1. Take a Break

Once people get the hang of working from home, they often move from task to task and lose track of time, forgetting to take breaks like they would in an office. Going from item to item with no time to reflect and regroup can hurt performance, so it’s important to remember to create a little space between outputs.

For example, spend 10 minutes reflecting on a meeting, then take a 15-minute break with a family member or a roommate, or go for a quick walk around the block. Getting fresh air in the middle of a workday can improve productivity. Studies have shown that breathing fresh air leads to better decision-making, higher test scores, and improved information processing—plus, it’s a wonderful way to support overall wellness.

  1. Connect with Coworkers

Schedule 10 minutes per day to chat with coworkers (via Slack, Zoom, or any other real-time communication tool) about non-work stuff. Whether it’s about the hottest streaming show or trading healthy meal recipes, the social support and connection can help remote workers decompress and build stronger relationships.

  1. Schedule Self-Care

Setting aside self-care time will bring balance to each day and provide the energy needed to tackle the next task. Prioritize exercise, hobbies, or a workday meditation practice. Anything that brings joy and peace will positively impact the ability to achieve better work-life balance when working from home.

  1. Take Time Off

Studies have shown that vacations can improve health and productivity, reduce stress, and are essential to maintaining mental health and preventing burnout. Additionally, taking regular vacations can help workers become better engaged and more productive employees.

  1. Seek Support

There may be times when taking breaks and self-care days are still not enough. Mental health is important, so don’t be afraid to reach out to a family member, friend, colleague, human resources team, or an Employee Assistance Plan (EAP) for support and resources.

About FlexJobs

FlexJobs is the leading career service specializing in remote, hybrid, and flexible jobs, with over 125 million people having used its resources since 2007.