Many SMBs feel their work-life balance is in jeopardy

Businessman pinching temples holding his glasses
(Image credit: Shutterstock / Elnur)

The transition to working from home during the pandemic has further blurred the line between work life and personal life according to a new survey from Adobe.

As businesses around the world prepare to implement hybrid work policies, Adobe surveyed 5,500 enterprise workers and SMB owners across seven global regions to learn more about how their work-life balance has been affected by remote working.

While many initially thought not having to spend hours commuting each day would give them more time, unfortunately that “free” time has just become more work time. 

Of those surveyed, 49 percent of enterprise workers and 56 percent of SMB leaders say they now work longer hours than they would like to. In fact, both groups now work more than the standard work week with enterprise workers averaging 44.9 hours per week and SMB leaders averaging 45.1 hours.

As the number of hours spent working has increased, so too has pressure to always be reachable even after clocking out for the day. Adobe found that nearly half of enterprise workers and 60 percent of SMB leaders feel pressured to respond to emails and customers issues after hours.

Burnout and the great resignation

This additional time spent working has created the perfect recipe for burnout with more than a third of SMB leaders surveyed saying they have seen employee burnout and attrition as a result of work pressure during the pandemic.

Burnout has also affected essential small business leaders (60%) with more than half (51%) saying they're beginning to lose the passion that spurred them to launch their own businesses in the first place. Surprisingly, nearly of half of essential small business owners said they would be willing to sell their business tomorrow if they could.

Based on Adobe's research, it's no surprise that more and more workers are deciding to resign from their current positions. However, Gen Z is leading the charge and more than half of respondents from this group say they plan to pursue a new job in the next year. They're also the generation that is least satisfied with work-life balance (56%) and their jobs overall (59%).

Of those surveyed in this group, 62 percent said they feel the most pressure to work during “office hours” despite a quarter of them saying they actually work best outside of the standard 9-5 window. In fact, nearly half of Gen Z say they often work from bed.

Although employees work-life balance has been negatively affected by the pandemic, with the right online collaboration software, productivity tools and time management apps, they may be able to reclaim some of their lost time.

Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.