1 in 4 Remote Workers Think Their Employer Secretly Monitors Them

Nationwide Survey of Remote Work Habits and Trends in 2023

By now, Americans are well-versed in the work-from-home lifestyle. It’s been years since the sudden shift to remote work at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and now people are very comfortable with this working situation. So comfortable in fact, remote workers are doing a lot more than their job while on the clock, and many think their employees are spying on them!

At CraftJack, we were interested to see how WFH habits have changed since our 2022 report. Are remote workers working hard… or hardly working? We surveyed 1,000 workers, 68% of whom work at home fully or part-time along with 32% who work entirely in person. Americans had much to share about their good (and bad) work habits in 2023.

Remote Work Habits

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Some remote workers are doing a lot more than working during the day, and many think their employers are catching onto it. Nearly 1 in 4 (23%) believe their employer secretly monitors them to make sure they’re working. To get around that, some people have started using ‘mouse jigglers.’ Mouse jigglers are physical devices or software used to simulate the movement of a mouse to keep computers from going inactive. While the majority of survey respondents didn’t fess up to doing that, one generation stood out: 1 in 10 Gen Zers admitted to using a mouse jiggler! 

If they’re not working all the time, what are workers doing while on the clock? The main thing is household chores. Remote workers are doing a lot of laundry, cooking, and washing the dishes. But others are enjoying some entertainment. 43% admitted to watching a movie or TV show during the workday and 26% have played a video game! Some have mixed business with pleasure, with nearly 1 in 6 (15%) having sex.

Many remote workers have taken casual to a whole new level. More than half (54%) have worked from their bed, and 76% work in pajamas one day a week or more! Others have done double duty. Nearly 1 in 5 (19%) have worked from the toilet, and 18% have taken a work call while on the pot. Bold move.

How Remote Work Affects Your Health

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While more than 1 in 3 (36%) remote workers get lonely working from home, 39% shared this type of work has improved their mental health. More than 4 in 5 (81%) find it easier to eat healthy at home– it must be the close proximity to the fridge! 

More than half (55%) are trying to get a more supportive desk and chair for their WFH setup, but 67% said it’s too expensive for them to currently buy. Since 2020, Americans have invested a lot in expanding and remodeling their home offices spending an average of $788. But 77% believe companies should be helping with this cost by providing WFH equipment such as ergonomic chairs and standing desks for their remote workers.

One other issue many workers have run into: cleanliness. With their home serving as both their place of residence and workspace, 17% of remote workers are finding it harder to keep their homes clean. It’s gotten so tough that nearly 1 in 6 (15%) have ended up hiring a cleaning service.

Office Work vs. Remote Work

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Most remote workers aren’t looking to return to the office, and don’t think companies should be allowed to require it. 62% of remote workers say nothing would entice them to return to the office, and more than 1 in 2 (51%) would quit if forced to return. 

Remote workers do miss some parts of working in the office: the ability to talk to others in person, the sociability, and how it’s easier to separate work from home life. However, it can’t top some of the WFH perks such as no commute, flexibility, and work-life balance. 

Of the remote workers surveyed, 98% like working from home. Office workers don’t share the same sentiment about their work setting. Just 66% of in-person workers like working in the office. While some workers may end up back in that setting again, it looks like remote work is here to stay, at least for some companies. Hopefully, workers don’t abuse the trust their employers are giving them by getting too distracted during the day, and instead soak up all the benefits that WFH offers them. 


In June 2023, we surveyed 1,005 workers about their work environment and habits. 32% work remotely, 36% in hybrid jobs, and 32% in person. Respondents ranged in age from 18 to 85 with an average age of 41. 50% were male, 49% were female, 1% were non-binary, and 1% would rather not say. 

People surveyed worked in a variety of industries including 13% in tech/IT, 11% in health, 10% in retail, 9% in education, 9% in finance, 9% in business/marketing, 6% in manufacturing, and 5% in arts & entertainment.

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