More than a year ago, many people became remote workers by default, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. It wasn’t necessarily something most people had looked into—it just happened. Prior to the pandemic, about 20% of people with jobs that could be performed remotely actually worked from home all or most of the time, according to Pew Research. Now, that figure is 71%, with 54% saying they would opt to continue working from home even once the pandemic is over and they’re able to return to the office.
But as it turns out, some states are better than others when it comes to conditions—like low costs, reasonable comfort and a high level of security—for remote workers. To help us figure out which states are the most (and least) remote-worker-friendly, WalletHub crunched the numbers and created an interactive map showing the results. Here’s what to know.
How to find the best states for remote workers
Hover over a state to find out their ranking out of 51 (the District of Columbia is include).
To see a full list of the states and their rankings—as well as WalletHub’s methodology—take a look at the full report. As a preview, here are the top five and bottom five states:
- North Carolina
- New Hampshire
- Alaska (rank: 51st)
- Hawaii (rank: 50th)
- North Dakota (rank: 49th)
- Mississippi (rank: 48th)
- Arkansas (rank: 47th)
But how close have the conditions for remote workers during COVID been to those prior to the pandemic? Dr. Yemisi Awotoye, assistant professor of management at Gonzaga University tells WalletHub:
Because of the additional challenges posed by COVID, such as restrictions on where we can go and what we can do, the current work from home (WFH) arrangements may not be truly reflective of normal work from home situations. Specifically, some have opined that COVID WFH could easily become a case of living at the job rather than working from home, hence there is a critical need for people to strike a balance between their work and home lives.