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The UK’s best and worst industries and roles for remote work

WFH-hero-image.jpg 20/11/2020

Want to work from home permanently? Our research shows what industries and roles have the most permanent remote jobs available right now.


The coronavirus crisis has shone a light on the benefits of flexible working to British workers. A YouGov survey found that prior to the outbreak, almost two thirds of British employees had never worked from home. Yet once the crisis passes, 57% of workers want to continue doing so, in some capacity.

The majority of us are unlikely to ping back to full time, 9-5 office work. The office is not dead - some much prefer being around others. But remote, flexible working has lost its negative undertones for many who had not considered it before. It’s now an essential requirement for many companies, and more employees are viewing it as a work perk, which many would prefer to continue once the pandemic passes.

Remote working doesn’t just mean working from home - it means working where you feel you can work best. At KIT Online, we have scraped Indeed data from more than 431,000 jobs to find the percentage of permanent remote work available for over 100 popular job roles and industries in the UK.

And, newsflash: only 7.97% of the entire jobs available online were fully remote. Jobseekers looking for more remote work can look into how their skills fit within these roles and sectors.

Take a look below to find out how your career ranks…

Top 10 Industries for Remote Working



Top 10 industries
remote jobs v sector

Copywriting and content marketing is the best industry for remote workers, followed by web development and journalism

Copywriting, content marketing and web development has topped the industry average for remote work available. It’s perhaps unsurprising that they dominate the list, as tools we use to work from home are ideal for those in the creative or development industries.

The fact that video and journalism are in there too also makes sense, as remote work doesn’t always mean working from home, and journalists can be expected to work across the country to cover news stories. You can find great solutions for those in the creative industries here.

The average copywriter salary in the UK is £31,265, while the average salary for a software developer is £30,967, but can reach highs of £62,500 for management positions.

Top 10 job-specific roles: Creatives and developers dominate



Top 10 roles-creatives-and-developers

Worst 10 Industries for Remote Working

Worst 10 industries for homeworking graph

Quantity surveying, production managers and construction managers are the worst industries for remote working, with just 30 remote jobs between 2,859 jobs.


Those working in the manual trade are typically seen as less likely to do remote work, which is evidenced in this list. However remote work can actually help those in management positions in logistics, construction, and engineering to focus on administrative tasks, and save time and money by working where they want to be. And they want to work remotely, too - the majority of construction and property workers want to avoid the office after lockdown.

One of the biggest pain points in the likes of the construction sector, which has always been an in-person gig, is the lack of communication tools and remote-friendly infrastructure. This was shown when the industry faced challenges back in March. However, with the advent of Building Information Modelling (BIM), the ability to plan, design and coordinate the construction of buildings with computer-aided software is creating a strong demand in the industry to work remotely.

In these traditionally ‘hands on’ jobs, new technology encourages employers to take note. For example, those in managerial positions are beginning to upgrade to lighter, portable, robust devices which are so powerful that they no longer require both laptops and an office-based desktop. Instead, they can use the same machine for their work purposes on site and when writing reports and revising designs from home.

One of the biggest challenges is increasing visibility and maintaining communications across the supply chain, but there are many sector-specific tools you can use to bring your team together. You can monitor milestones, delegate work, collaborate with partners and subcontractors, and manage any employees or tenders, all while working from home - and it can actually increase employee morale and safety.

Worse 10 job-specific roles: Hands-on jobs are least flexible


Least flexible job roles

Seniority gap: CEOs had almost five times more chance of working from home than graduates


percentage remote available
Trust has never been more important in the move to working from home - and these graphs paint a picture that perhaps there is a lack of trust in some industries. In management roles, CEOs had their pick of almost 15% remote jobs. While for graduate roles, those starting out in their career had just 3.01% chance of finding a role.

While graduates may want to start their venture into the working world in an office to learn in real-time and have in-person social interaction with co-workers, there are also a number of benefits to graduates working remotely. Does it come down to a trust issue?

And the picture was similar across sales…

Salesjobs

Although communications bucked the trend

Commsjobs
Pete Braithwaite, COO at KIT Online:
“Remote working is fast becoming not just a benefit on the job description, but a deciding factor when people come to apply for jobs. For those that are able to offer more remote job opportunities, they are also widening their talent pool. They have the chance to hire people from across the country to increase the value they deliver to customers, as remote work isn’t limited by location. Remote work is becoming a part of life for many organisations, and I hope more industries follow in the footsteps of the creative and development industries in the next few years. It will be interesting to see what next year will bring.”

Benefits of working remotely

  1. Flexibility - you can shift around your schedule to make it work better for you.
     
  2. Environment - work in the environment where you’re most productive, or your team is the happiest.
     
  3. Zero commuting - beneficial for the environment and the purse strings, but it also gives you more time with your loved ones.
     
  4. Access to a wider pool of talent - your business isn’t constricted to just the people in the city where the HQ is located. As a result, more smaller towns and cities will benefit financially
     .
  5. Reduced cost for businesses - companies can condense their property overheads, and use the space they have more efficiently.
     

Tips for successful communications with remote teams

  1. Move away from desktop reliance - Invest in tablets, 2-in-1 laptops, and tiny form-factor PCs which can help people with the flexibility to be able to work wherever they are able, with no hardware issues.
     
  2. Have regular virtual calls - Trust is a huge factor to remote working. Having regular video calls can help you to have visibility into what the rest of the team is doing, ask questions, and maintain that important relationship between each other.
     
  3. Invest in good-quality messaging platforms - Whether you use Slack, Microsoft Teams, or Basecamp, having an online channel will streamline your communications and help your team to stay aligned on the work and projects in progress.
     
  4. Work towards objectives to avoid micromanaging - When you’re working on specific goals and objectives, you’ll know that you’re aligned and not working in a vague direction. Once they have the objective, employees can go away and plan how they’re going to achieve their work, using one of the above platforms to communicate. Make sure the objectives are clear and not open to interpretation.
     
  5. Continue the social scene online - When you can’t chat about your weekend by the coffee machine, create a virtual one. When working remotely, it can be easy to only ever communicate with your team. Have a channel to discuss all things non-work related such as podcast and film recommendations, and organise virtual events where teams can have their Friday beer online.


Remote working isn’t for everyone, but your teams can stay tight-knit, even when they’re apart. Do you think your employees would welcome the chance to work from home permanently? Take a look at our suite of technology ready for all of your remote working needs.

Methodology

To create the Remote Working Index ranking the most remote-working friendly industries in the UK, we utilised various data sets from job website Indeed to analyse the following factors for 105 common job titles:

Number of jobs available Number of temporary remote jobs available Number of permanent remote working jobs available

The number of permanent jobs available was then divided by the number of jobs available to find the average percentage for each job title. Various job titles were then grouped into job industries and job hierarchies to find the average percentage for remote work in each field.

A full breakdown of all data used to create this index is available upon request.

You can find more information on our full offering of remote working technology here.
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