The desire to relocate varied considerably among different demographics, according to Royal London’s survey of 1,000 Irish adults.
Almost a third of Irish people would consider relocating to live somewhere else now that remote working has become more common since the onset of the pandemic.
That’s according to a survey of 1,000 Irish people by iReach, commissioned by insurance firm Royal London, in a bid to ascertain how people felt about remote working and the possibility of relocating permanently if their job allowed for it.
Of the 31pc who said they would move, 18pc of people were in favour of moving to the countryside or a town, 8pc would consider moving abroad and 5pc would move to an Irish city.
Barry McCutcheon, propositions lead at Royal London Ireland, commented that the recent changes in workplace culture had made people more open to lifestyle changes.
“Perhaps some have been renting in Dublin and now they plan to move back to their hometowns or maybe people are happy to relocate to somewhere rural in order to avail of more green space and potentially more affordable housing. 43pc of respondents said they would stay where they are living in a town or the countryside and 26pc said they would stay living in a city,” he said.
The survey also revealed a large appetite for remote working among respondents, with 90pc indicating they would like to work remotely either part-time or full-time. This figure is up from 83pc in a similar Royal London survey in 2019.
More than half of respondents (56pc) said they would like a mix between office-based and remote working. Just over a third (34pc) would like to work remotely exclusively, and just 10pc said that they would prefer to return to the office full-time.
The findings revealed different views on remote working between genders and age groups, however. Remote working was more popular with men than it was with women, with 42pc of men saying they would prefer to work remotely full-time compared to 26pc of women. Around two-thirds (64pc) of women said they would rather have an office as a base and be able to work remotely a few days a week, as opposed to 48pc of men.
The desire to relocate to a town or rural area to work remotely was highest among 25 to 34-year-olds and lowest among the over 55s, at 31pc and 7pc respectively. Results varied in terms of gender, with 22pc of men saying they would move permanently for work compared to 13pc of women.
McCutcheon said there are pros and cons to remote working, depending on a person’s circumstances and preferences.
“Working remotely can provide more flexibility during the working day and it may allow for more time to do things you enjoy, like spending time with family and friends. However, living and working remotely in the same environment can make it difficult to separate home life from work life, for some,” he commented.
“Of course, it’s worth noting that working remotely and working from home are not the same. Remote work is a flexible style of working which allows employees to work anywhere outside of the organisation’s usual physical place of business, for example a co-working space or a café, or indeed from home.”