Bay Area

Most Californians Prefer to Work, Learn From Home: Survey

NBC Universal, Inc.

Work from home isn’t for everybody, but for many Californians over the past year, it seemed to be preferable to commuting to the office, according to a new survey.

The survey released by University of Southern California and the California Emerging Technology Fund found that 53% of workers would prefer to work from home part time or full time in the future.

Only 18% of workers polled said they’d prefer a full return to the office.

For students 18 and older who took classes online, about two-thirds said they would continue distance learning, given the opportunity.

The survey polled about 1,600 people.

In contrast, another survey, from the Bay Area Council, found almost 40% of people working from home said they expected to be back at the office full time, and just 16% said they expect to continue working from home full-time.

Many workers said they were more productive without a long commute, and fewer commuters could benefit the environment. The survey authors also said telecommuting increases access to health, education and essential services.

But, as the early months of the pandemic showed, the digital divide is very real, and broadband accessibility isn’t the same in all communities and income levels. The USC survey affirmed there's a disparity among Black, Hispanic and Asian respondents when it comes to internet and online health access.

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