Brazilian public sector workers positive about remote working

More than half of government staff in the country had never worked from home before, according to a study.

Brazilian public sector workers see remote working positively despite it being a novelty for most of them, according to research.

Most departments are adopting the home office approach during the COVID-19 outbreak, and 66% had never worked remotely before the pandemic, according to the survey carried out by Brazilian govtech WeGov and software development firm Softplan.

Of the government workers surveyed, 72% said they are happy about the new working arrangements. According to the survey, the results demonstrate decision-makers should consider the upsides of operating remotely.

"Coronavirus posed a great challenge for [public sector organizations] across the country: digital transformation. When implemented, [digitization] increases the productivity of the public sector workers and improves the provision of services as well as citizen satisfaction", says WeGov director and survey organizer, André Tamura.

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According to the research, the most frequently used tools by public servants to stay connected during the period of social distancing include WhatsApp and Google tools. Other services such as Skype, Trello and Zoom were also mentioned - earlier this month, the latter was banned by food and drug regulator Anvisa over security concerns.

On the other hand, the survey noted that only 22% of civil servants polled said that they have all the right tools to do their job remotely.

According to those unhappy with their tech set-up, problems cited by respondents include lack of remote access to corporate servers (9.4%), difficulties in accessing the Internet (3.1%), lack of technological resources (2.4%), adequate tools (4.3%) and appropriate support (1.6%).

The WeGov survey was carried out with 373 civil servants operating in public sector organizations across Brazil between March 19 and 23.