With COVID-19 turning home into the workplace nationwide, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on the Best States for Working from Home.
To identify which states are most conducive to home offices, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 12 key metrics. The data set ranges from the share of workers working from home before COVID-19 to internet cost and cybersecurity. WalletHub considered factors like how large and how crowded homes are in the state. Together, these metrics show how feasible working from home is in terms of cost, comfort and safety. Below, you can see highlights from the report, along with a WalletHub Q&A.
Working from Home in California (1=Best, 25=Avg.):
- 13th – Share of Population telecommuting (pre-COVID-19)
- 36th – Share of Potential Telecommuters
- 12th – Households’ Internet Access
- 31st – Average Home Square Footage
- 50th – Cybersecurity
- 45th – Average Retail Price of Electricity
- 1st – Internet Cost
Q&A with WalletHub
Why is Delaware the best state for working from home?
“Delaware is the best state for working from home due in part to the fact that the state provides a comfortable environment for working remotely, with the sixth largest average home square footage. In addition, nearly 97 percent of households in Delaware have internet speeds above 25Mbps,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Plus, Delaware has one of the highest percentages of people who could potentially work from home, so many workers can take advantage of these good remote work conditions.”
Why does Alaska rank lowest telecommuting?
“One reason Alaska ranks lowest for working from home is that only around 68 percent of the population has broadband internet access. In addition, Alaska has the fifth lowest share of potential telecommuters, ” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “On top of that, Alaska is the lowest ranked state when it comes to cybersecurity and has the fourth highest cost of electricity in the nation. For many people, working from home in Alaska will be difficult, costly and risky.”
What can people who have never telecommuted before do to make the transition smooth?
“People who are working from home for the first time should treat it the same way as they would going to their place of work normally. They should continue to follow their daily work routine, just without the commute,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “It’s important for workers to be punctual and minimize the amount of distractions around them from things in their house that wouldn’t be at work, such as a TV. However, workers could consider getting a little extra sleep or having a better breakfast in the time they normally would have spent commuting.”
Should companies allow their employees to work remotely?
“Yes, companies should allow their employees to work from home, if possible. Not only does that help to minimize virus transmission, but it also preserves jobs that might have otherwise been lost,” said Jill Gonzales, WalletHub analyst. “Companies that can conduct their business online also have a better chance of staying afloat during the pandemic. In addition, while keeping employees on the payroll working from home may be hard on the company’s finances during the pandemic, the government is offering loans through the Paycheck Protection Program to help with that problem.”
For the full report, please click here.
- Home office: Pixaby