- Since the start of the pandemic, 38% of employees say they have experienced video call fatigue, according to a Robert Half survey published Nov. 12.
- The most common video call pet peeve was technical issues followed by too many meeting participants and people talking over each other. Nearly one-quarter of respondents (24%) said they find virtual meetings inefficient and exhausting and would prefer to communicate through email or phone.
- One in four employees (26%) said the practicality and novelty of videoconferencing wore off over the past eight months. With workers strapped for time, Paul McDonald, senior executive director of Robert Half, called on companies to determine the goal of a video call before setting them up, he said in the announcement.
While an overload of meetings is a known workplace problem, the pandemic has exacerbated the issue with organizations conducting most meetings virtually, according to Robert Half's findings.
While many are still working remotely, organizations may not need every meeting in a virtual format. Instead, different, shorter meetings could offer a replacement, according to Robert Half.
An April study from Clockwise found employees were spending more time in both one-on-one meetings and team meetings. Clockwise said this increased the amount of "fragmented time" on employees' schedules, which prevents people from doing focused work. Employees also were working about an extra hour per week.
Experts that spoke with HR Dive about running online meetings effectively suggested making sure digital safety is a priority, keeping cameras on as much as possible and running meetings with a more intentional, deliberate format that actively solicits the opinions of team members. They also suggested canceling or moving meetings if they were not necessary.
Like screen fatigue, the related challenge of employee burnout existed before the pandemic and may be getting worse during it. A study from BetterUp found resilience, particularly among front-line managers, can go a long way in overcoming difficulties. BetterUp's chief innovation officer was one of two experts who shared how employees and managers can build the capacity for resilience.