COVID-19: 55% of US workers are unhappy with employers' response

A PeopleMetrics study surveyed employees across the US and found tech workers the most satisfied and the transportation industry and Gen-Z as the least.

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A survey conducted by the software company PeopleMetrics revealed technology industry employees are the most satisfied (65%) with their employers' response in handling the workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Only 55% of the 1,008 full-time workers polled are satisfied with how the company they work for reacted when the coronavirus pandemic shuttered many businesses and, if able, were sent home to telecommute. 

Talent-firm Dice reported in a 2020 Salary Report that 93% of tech workers want to work from home anyway.

Transportation industry workers are the least satisfied with their employers' response to the COVID-19 crisis, with only 29% satisfied. 

SEE: Coronavirus: Critical IT policies and tools every business needs (TechRepublic Premium)

But, not everyone is both sheltering-at-home and working: 20% surveyed are still required to work on site, while 42% were told to work from home. 

A huge percent of wage and salaried workers (79.4%)do not have the ability to work from home, according to statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

"Creating a great employee experience is always important, but in today's world, every company's top priority should be taking care of their people during disruptions from COVID-19," said Sean McDade, founder and CEO of PeopleMetrics in a press release. "As indicated in our study, companies have work to do before employees feel like they are fully supported during these uncertain times."

Responses were divided generationally, with Gen X being the only generation with more than half of respondents satisfied by their company's response. Least satisfied? Apparently Gen Z has lofty standards, because they are particularly unhappy, with only 36% reporting they're satisfied.

"Previously, Gen X, Gen Y, and younger demographics were more receptive to more working from home compared to baby boomers who were more focused on some level of office time, [across all industries]," Tim Herbert, executive vice president for research and market intelligence at CompTIA told TechRepublic in mid-March. Herbert also said older workers are stigmatized, feeling compelled to be present in their offices, while younger generations have always known online collaboration, sharing, and making friends remotely, so telecommuting is less of an issue for them. 
Philadelphia-based PeopleMetric's survey respondents represented

  • 21% from the West

  • 33% from the South

  • 23% from the Midwest

  • 23% from the Northeast 

PeopleMetric's findings "also reflect differences in view, depending on company size," the company indicated in a press release.

  • 42% of respondents were from companies with less than 500 employees

  • 58% of respondents were from larger companies

The results demonstrate a margin of error is +/- 3.087%, at a confidence level of 95%.

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By N.F. Mendoza

N.F. Mendoza is based in Los Angeles. She has a BA in Broadcast Journalism and Cinema Critical Studies and a Master's of Professional Writing, both from USC. Nadine has more than 20 years experience as a journalist covering film, TV, entertainment, b...