Women in Ireland more likely to work remotely while sick than men

Workhuman survey shows more than half (57%) of women in Irish workplaces feel obligated to work while sick when working remotely, compared to a third (34%) of men.

The study by Workhuman also found that 40% of women in Ireland are more likely than men (32%) to feel mentally exhausted and drained after the working day.

Despite these disparities, Workhuman’s survey found that women and men are equally likely to feel respected at work in Ireland. The research showed that 65% of women working in Ireland feel respected in their jobs, compared to 64% of men. Meanwhile, more than half (55%) of both women and men are likely to feel appreciated for their work.

“It is clear that more needs to be done to support working parents in organisations across the board”

The survey was carried out by Dynata on behalf of Workhuman across 2,268 full-time employees in Ireland, the UK, the US, and Canada. The aim of the research was to explore the state of human connection at work.

Valuing diversity and inclusion

It found that while men and women are equally likely to feel respected and appreciated at work, women are more likely to value diversity and inclusion in the workplace. When it comes to staying at their organisation, some 84% of women reported that diversity and inclusion is important to them, compared to 73% of men.

Meanwhile, men working in Ireland (49%) are slightly more likely than women (42%) to see a clear path for growth within their organisation.

The research also provided insights into the experiences of parents working in Ireland. It found that parents are less likely to feel respected at work than parents in the UK, U.S., or Canada combined (64% vs 72%), while 60% were more likely to feel overworked in the last 12 months compared to 52% of their global counterparts 40% of non-parents working in Ireland.

“This research highlights work practices and sentiments in a post-pandemic world and allows us to observe how Irish workers fare against their global counterparts,” said Niamh Graham, senior vice-president of Global Human Experience at Workhuman.

“Women working remotely in Ireland clearly feel significantly more pressure to work while they are unwell, compared to their male colleagues. Whether this is external or internal pressure, it is something that must be addressed by every organisation as they strive to create more human-led workforces.

“We know from our own research that gender bias still exists in Irish – and global – workplaces. Managers must not only ensure that they themselves are treating everyone equally, but they must also be aware of how their team members are perceiving and acting upon their roles and obligations, and make sure that the workload is not disproportionately distributed based on a person’s gender, race or otherwise.

“Despite the differing attitudes highlighted in our research, it is encouraging to see that both women and men feel equally respected and appreciated at work in Ireland. Showing appreciation and recognising employees is not only good for the human, but also good for business.

“It is clear that more needs to be done to support working parents in organisations across the board. Fostering a culture of belonging and taking the time to understand and get to know employees as people, who have rich lives outside of work, starts with putting wellbeing at the centre of your HR strategy. Employers need to continue to build a culture of recognition and appreciation, especially in the decentralised workplace where conscious efforts should be made to connect with employees,” Graham said.

Main image: Niamh Graham, senior vice-president of Global Human Experience at Workhuman

John Kennedy
Award-winning ThinkBusiness.ie editor John Kennedy is one of Ireland's most experienced business and technology journalists.