Working from home has become a necessary normal, one that’s led companies to begin exploring the benefits of workplaces in the metaverse. This is an inevitable change that may help to mitigate some of the challenges that remote working has brought to the surface. Yet, for all the positives offered by a metaverse workplace, it may only intensify certain negatives of remote work for employees.
To explore these topics further, ExpressVPN commissioned a study, in collaboration with Pollfish, surveying 1,500 employees and 1,500 employers in the United States to provide a clearer picture of how they see themselves working in the metaverse.
Technological advancements have increased productivity
As workplaces continue to move to non-office arrangements, both workers (90%) and employers (88%) agree that technological advancements have allowed them to increase productivity and improve connections with their co-workers. Employees in particular cite video conferencing (27%), and in-person meetings (19%)as the communication methods that make them feel most connected and engaged. While employers agree when it comes to video conferencing (32%), they view the metaverse (17%) as the second-best method for staying connected with co-workers versus just 9% of employees.
Employers are much more excited and curious about the metaverse
The majority of employers report feeling excited (66%) and optimistic (54%) about the future of work in the metaverse. Whereas employees report feeling higher levels of anxiety (24%), suspicion (20%) and confusion (17%), signaling an overall level of hesitation.
The metaverse creates opportunities for increased workplace surveillance, which may bring employee pushback
Employee monitoring software has become a popular way for employers to keep an eye on their employees, and the metaverse will only increase the potential for surveillance activities. When looking at existing surveillance tactics, 73% of employers admit to currently surveilling their employees.
The top concerns of employees related to workplace surveillance are the tracking of their real-time location (51%), real-time screen monitoring (50%) and time tracking (47%). Meanwhile, employers are most interested in recording workplace meetings(42%), time tracking (39%), tracking real-time location (39%) and screen monitoring (39%).
“Given the reluctance of many workers to accept further surveillance in the workplace, employers should tread carefully when planning to implement further monitoring activities in virtual workspaces and consider whether they’re worth the potential loss of trust and satisfaction among their employees,”
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