Three in 10 Emiratis expect to work permanently from home

Nearly 71% of respondents said access to video communication platforms should be allowed permanently in the UAE, a survey by Zoom shows

In some ways, the pandemic has been a remarkable boon to the tech sector's profits. Reuters
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About 31 per cent of the Emirati employees expect to work from home permanently even after the pandemic subsides, according to a new survey.

Almost 27 per cent of respondents said they want to come back to the office full-time after the pandemic, said the survey that was conducted by US-based Zoom Video Communications to gather the viewpoints of Emiratis on the popularity of live streaming platforms and the future of work.

Nearly 38 per cent individuals expect a blended model of work that will see employees working from both offices and homes.

“The pandemic has introduced rapid and dramatic shifts in how people work … changing habits and opening new opportunities for the work environment,” Derek Pando, international and partner marketing at Zoom, said.

The video conferencing service provider did not disclose the sample size of the respondents, of which 68 per cent were males and 32 per cent females.

But to continue the hybrid model of work, respondents said it was important that such platforms continue to be available.

Nearly 83 per cent of the Emiratis said it is very important to have such platforms while 6 per cent said they can manage without them.

More than 70 per cent said access to video communication platforms should be allowed permanently in the UAE and 66 per cent expected this move will boost the country’s economy and innovation.

The UAE temporarily eased restrictions in March on the usage of Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) platforms including Microsoft’s Skype, Google Hangouts and Zoom to facilitate remote work and distance learning amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The move has helped platforms such as Zoom, which has been used for entertainment, fitness and education, garner a massive user base.

Zoom's user base in the UAE grew 900 per cent to reach 1 million within a month after the country authorised its use in March. Within the first week after the ban was lifted, Zoom gained 100,000 new free and paid users in the UAE.

“We value the region’s focus on digital transformation, particularly true in the UAE where the government’s ambition to fast track its digital economy gives us full confidence in the potential that this market represents for Zoom,” Sam Tayan, managing director for the Middle East and Africa at Zoom, said.