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Glasgow City Council

Future Ways of Working - Survey Results

Future Ways of Working - the results are in


In July over 2800 office staff, including those who have been predominately working from home, completed the survey relating to health and wellbeing during the pandemic, impacts of working from home, and views on future ways of working. Thank you to everyone who took the time to respond.

It's important that we capture your views to make sure that we continue to deliver our services effectively and build our learning to develop future ways of working.

A snap shot of the main responses is provided below, and you can read the pdf icon full report here. [529kb]

Nearly 32% of all office staff with access to a computer responded to the survey which is higher than average for corporate surveys and is a representative sample for research purposes.

Your health and wellbeing

We asked you how you had been personally impacted as a result of during the pandemic and you told us that these areas were the most difficult to deal with:

Your health and wellbeing chart

Despite difficult circumstances there were also some positives as a result of the pandemic. Employees welcomed the ability to feel safe, be available to look after family and keep them safe too and many disabled and those managing long term ill health conditions found great advantages to working from home.

What staff said - positive impacts on health and wellbeing

"I suffer from a long-term health problem, the last year has been completely transformational for me and my ability to manage work without the demands of the office. I have more energy and I can concentrate better. Since March 2020, I have not needed to take any sickness absence time."

"I am an unpaid carer and used to take most of my leave to take a dependant to appointments, and I didn't realise how stressed I was, trying to juggle it all with a 2-hour commute. This year has helped my stress and anxiety levels immensely. I can focus on my work, and I have a wonderful line manager who is flexible around appointments. I am also able to go swimming before work in the morning and attend classes after work which I couldn't do before when working in the city, this has been immensely helpful for my mental health."

It's encouraging to know that the health and wellbeing support offered during the pandemic reached staff:

  • 89% of respondents said they were aware of all the health and wellbeing support available to them
  • 82% of people were made aware of this through the weekly corporate emails.


  • The health and wellbeing support is continually updated and recent information has been added to support a return to the workplace and continued working from home, you'll find everything at
  • Further specific analysis of the health and wellbeing data will support inform the council's health and wellbeing action plans including supporting staff experiencing grief and loss.
  • Data will be fed into the Organisational Development Team to develop future support for staff.

Remember,Workplace Options, our Employee Assistance Provider, can provide everyone with practical and emotional support with any of life's challenges including counselling services and mental health support. They can be contacted 24 hours a day, seven days a week:

Adapting to working from home

We asked you how you had adapted to working from home during the pandemic:

  • Over 73% of respondents felt they had been trusted to deliver their roles from home
  • 61% said they felt fewer distractions at home and this also aided productivity
  • Nearly 68% of respondents noted that working from home had improved their work life balance which they felt contributed to their productivity
  • 48% of employees felt the organisational messages kept them informed at home
  • Employees reported positively that 77% felt confidence in their manager, managing their remote working team.

You also told us that you felt either more productive, or at least maintained the same productivity while working at home:

  • 35% of respondents said that work productivity has stayed the same working from home, over 55% of respondents said this has been better.

Impact of working from home

There has been an overall positive impact reported by respondents on the impact of working from home on their engagement and personal circumstances. Unexpectedly reduced costs and improved work life balance feature highest.

  • Engagement has improved with over 60% of respondents feeling the quality of the delivery of their role has improved and they feel more motivated in delivering work.
  • Of the 2861 respondents, nearly 1000 said it has helped them meet their unpaid caring responsibilities.
  • Although 54% of respondents have reported to have missed the social interaction with their colleagues.

''Working from home has improved my work life balance dramatically by eliminating travel time from my day. This has allowed me to get more sleep and feel well rested throughout the work day. I feel this has benefitted my work progress throughout the day and reduced my stress levels and improved my mental health. With time saved from not having to commute back and forth I have had more time to exercise which has benefitted me both mentally and physically''

  • The positives weren't without some detrimental impacts, for some, the boundaries between work and life in a home space felt difficult, maybe for example, working longer hours, being less able to switch off and sharing workspace with multiple members of the household.

"Working from home has been a challenging and isolating experience, particularly at the beginning of the pandemic. I feel I've had to work harder and longer whilst working from home. I am too accessible to managers, with phone calls and meetings requested often past office hours. There needs to be more of an appreciation of staff mental health and the importance of taking breaks ensuring that staff take their lunchtimes and breaks throughout the day. It has been exceptionally hard to switch off in the evenings and during annual leave due to continued contact from colleagues and the lack of distinction between work and home life."


  • The Organisational Development Team will look at our pdf icon working at home etiquette [63kb] and build this into management development sessions on how to support employees with changing workstyles and digital accessibility.
  • This highlights the importance of continuing to respect and support one another in our daily working lives, being mindful of the boundaries of our work and home life.

Health and safety working from home

Your health and safety are important to us, no matter where you are working, it's encouraging to know that many of you have done the Display Screen Equipment Online Assessment and been supported at home:

  • 68% of respondents completed the Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Online Assessment.
  • 35% felt the assessment really supported the improvement of their workspace with a further 57% assuming no changes as a result, suggesting their workstation standard was met.
  • Of those who used the assessment 24% took up the opportunity to access further workplace aids to support them at home.


  • Everyone should take the time to do the DSE assessment on GOLD, you'll find it here.
  • You should talk to your line manager about the results of the assessment, if required.
  • The assessment should continue to be completed on a regular basis.

Health and safety returning to the office

A quarter to over a third of respondents had strong views on the need for effective and clear Health and safety practices to allow employees to feel confident with others in an office space.

Nearly 40% reported that it would be important to understand how to escalate matters that made them feel unsafe at work.


If you are returning to the work place, it's important that you take personal responsibility for understanding and adopting the behaviours and workplace guidance that will help to protect yourself and others, including:

  • Keeping to a physical distance
  • Wearing a face covering when moving around buildings
  • Maintaining good hand hygiene
  • Following the signage in place to limit the numbers in certain places
  • Self-isolating if you have symptoms.

For more information about health and safety in the workplace, check the protect yourself and others factsheet here.

You can also read the questions and answers about being in the office here.

Any issues should be reported to your line manager of the appropriate council service.

Views on future working from home

Employees also took the chance to express their wishes for more balance approach to the future ways of working, with multiple requests for hybrid working in the future.

When asked about how many days were needed in the office in the future, nearly 60% of respondents felt one to three days would meet the demands of their role in the office and still offer them the appropriate work life balance.

Views on future working from home


  • The hybrid working pilot will continue and your views along with the opinions of our operational areas and trade unions will be considered before making any final decisions about future ways of working
  • A further staff survey will be conducted to gather your views
  • Services are being asked to feedback results from the hybrid working pilot relating to their areas and this information will be reviewed by the Corporate Management Team on a regular basis
  • Everyone should continue to discuss hybrid working arrangements with their line managers including, what's working well and what's not
  • Space will continue to be prioritised for staff who need it for operational and health and wellbeing reasons.
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