Virtira’s study reveals that 49% of employees experience a high degree of exhaustion from being required or pressured to be on camera during online meetings.
The Webcam Survey: Exhausted or Engaged? provides insights from over 1,700 managers and employees about the direct impact that company policies on the use of video during online meetings have on the well-being of employees. The survey also examines whether other factors contribute to the high incidence of reported employee exhaustion.
“As businesses adapt and learn from the remote work experiment, many have implemented policies regarding remote work based on opinion rather than data, causing a negative impact on employees,” says Virtira CEO Cynthia Watson – formerly Cynthia Spraggs – and author of “How To Work From Home And Actually Get Sh*t Done.”
“In my conversations with business leaders throughout the pandemic, the majority said that employees on webcams during meetings increased engagement and productivity, but our study clearly shows it can have the opposite effect.
“With many businesses planning to move towards a fully remote or hybrid/flex model, understanding which policies create productive WFH and office-based employees is going to be critical moving forward – if businesses want to increase productivity and move beyond the pandemic.”
Key findings reveal:
- Over 49% of individuals report being exhausted due to being on a webcam. With current estimates of over 25 million employees working at home and another 41 million at the office or in a flexible commuting arrangement, this means that the rate of exhaustion could exist in over 30 million people.
- 61% of those surveyed reported that all meetings they attend are conducted on video for all participants.
- Over 60% reported that the number of meetings they attend has increased significantly since the pandemic.
- Over 65% of responses indicate that being on video is best used for team engagement and connection; however, only 11% reported that the camera was used this way.
- Over 25% reported feeling peer pressure to put on their cameras even if it was not a requirement.