‘Malaysians the most stressed out from Covid-19 and WFH’

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PETALING JAYA: Malaysia has a greater proportion of people working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic compared with the global average, but its people are also experiencing the highest level of anxiety among the 28 countries polled, a survey revealed.

Market research firm Ipsos, in its latest study on the pandemic’s effect on the workforce, found that 65% of Malaysians said they were working from home, compared to the 52% global average.

The online study was conducted among 12,823 employed adults aged 16-74 across 28 countries.

Among the countries polled were Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico and the United States.

The survey firm said that the stress came from changes in routine, family pressure and other concerns.

It noted that 63% of Malaysian workers to a large or some extent are finding it difficult achieving work-life balance.

“Work-life balance is a challenge for about two-thirds of Malaysian employees. About 62% polled felt that their homes are unequipped to get the work done.

“More than half of Malaysian employees (57%) feel lonely and isolated while working from home, ” said Ipsos in a statement.

It also found that women and those aged below 35 years as well as lower income employees also experienced negative effects of working from home more significantly than others.

Ipsos Malaysia director Arun Menon said the pandemic brought considerable disruption to the life of workers across the world.

“However, the negative effects of the pandemic related changes are uneven. Female employees are more likely to be impacted by the changes than their male colleagues, ” he said.

Arun said people under the age of 35, and lower income employees, feel more anxiety and stress related to job security as well.

He added that business owners or decision makers also face much pressure on the choices that they make in this pandemic.

The survey found that more than a third of Malaysians had to take a leave of absence, and that 17% of Malaysian respondents claimed to have either left or lost their jobs.

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