Digital Nomads Still Not a Thing, According to a Government Survey

The American Time Use Survey also shows men are still lacking in household duties

Working out of office
According to recent statistics, we're not really working out of the office more (Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash)
By Kirk Miller / July 16, 2019 11:29 am

We still go to an office to work and household duties still, sadly, fall along gender lines. 

Those are some of the conclusions reached by the American Time Use Survey, a joint report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Census Bureau. The annual survey looks at both work and household / leisure activities. 

Overall, we already knew we were basically sleeping, working and watching TV more — combined, that percentage has risen slightly over the years (at least through 2017). Flowing Data, meanwhile, has just taken the updated 2018 stats and run some comparisons over the years regarding our average workday. 

Some interesting conclusions:

  • Multiple job holders were twice as likely to work on an average weekend day than single job holders 
  • We’re still office people: 82 percent of the employed did some or all of their work at a separate workplace, while only 24 percent did all or some of their work at home. If you have an advanced degree, however, you’re over three times more likely to do some of your work at home.
  • On an average day, 84 percent of women and 69 percent of men spend time doing household activities (housework, cooking, etc.). However, there are some good trends here, as well share below.

When Flowing Data started comparing results between 2003 (when the survey started) and 2018, some trends emerge.

  • Men’s share of food preparation and cleanup increased from 35 to 46 percent since 2003. 
  • While people who spend some time working at home has risen from 19 to 24 percent, that number has remained flat since 2009.
  • Shopping, housework and socializing have all gone down a few percentage points… which is interesting, because that includes online shopping (sorry, Prime Day).
  • Caring for household children is also down several points, which Flowing Data attributes to “two working parents means less time dedicated to caring for kids.” Separately, when you do have kids, pretty much all activities go down that don’t include, except, surprisingly, exercise

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