Nearly 40% of people surveyed by researchers at Keio University in Tokyo and other institutions said they felt their mental health had deteriorated due to teleworking, which the government began to promote after the spread of the coronavirus outbreak.
The survey was conducted via the internet between March 26 and 28, with 8,475 male and female workers between 20 and 64, including non-regular workers, responding.
About 21.1% had started teleworking, and half of them did so in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Although 50.7% said their mental health was unchanged, 35% said their mental health had deteriorated due to teleworking, while 14. 3% said their mental health was better.
When respondents who said their teleworking conditions had worsened were asked to provide multiple answers about their problems, 41.3% said they had to “blur the line between work and private life,” followed by 39.9% who had been prone to lack of exercise, and 39.7% who have “had difficulty communicating at work.”
Isamu Yamamoto, a professor of Faculty of Business and Commerce at Keio University who conducted the survey, pointed out, “If the boundaries between work and private life become blurred, there is a risk that longer working hours will result.
“It is necessary to establish a rigid system in which work can be carried out in a planned manner, such as setting working hours and the timing of contacts by superiors,” Yamamoto said.