Since March of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused record numbers of Americans to transition to remote work. As COVID cases have surged across the country, recent CDC guidelines suggest that workers should be allowed to work remotely if they can. While many jobs are suitable to a remote work environment, most are not.
Using data from the Census Bureau as well as a recent study by University of Chicago researchers, about 31 percent of U.S. workers are employed in remote-friendly jobs, but this varies substantially on a geographic level. Additionally, not everyone who works in an occupation that can be performed remotely is well positioned to do so. Differences in computer and high-speed internet access, as well as available space in the household, all impact an individual’s preparedness for remote work.
To find the most prepared places in the U.S. to work from home, researchers at Filterbuy analyzed data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the University of Chicago. They created a composite telework preparedness score based on the following factors:
- Percentage of workers in remote-friendly jobs
- Percentage of households with a laptop or desktop computer
- Percentage of households with broadband internet, such as cable, fiber optic or DSL
- Percentage of households with at least one spare bedroom that could be used as a home office
- Median number of rooms per person in each household
To find the metropolitan areas in the U.S. most prepared to work from home, researchers at Filterbuy ranked metro areas according to their composite score. To improve relevance, only metropolitan areas with at least 100,000 people were included in the analysis. Additionally, metro areas were grouped into the following cohorts based on population size:
- Small metros: 100,000–349,999
- Midsize metros: 350,000–999,999
- Large metros: 1,000,000 or more
To read the full report, click here