Researchers from tech giant Microsoft are studying how working from home can change the workplace. 

A new paper by the international research group suggests changing communication behaviours while working from home could be reducing the quality of work and opportunities to learn.

In the early half of 2020, researchers studied the communication data of about 60,000 Microsoft workers in the US to see who they communicated with, how they communicated and how often. 

The researchers say they found that a shift to remote work caused a shift away from real-time communication like phone calls and meetings towards less immediate communication like emails and instant messages. 

Looking at who workers were communicating with, the researchers say remote work reduced discussions between different sections of the workplace, which they believe could reduce access to new information and knowledge.

Remote work was found to have decreased real-time communication such as scheduled voice and video call hours, increased the volume of emails and instant messages, and increased the average number of hours worked in a week.

The full study is accessible here.