Workers Put In 365 Hours Overtime, Just Answering Emails And Calls



Do you feel like your work day never really ends? It turns out the death of the time clock is not a figment of your imagination. According to a new survey released by Good Technology, the average American worker puts in an extra month and a half of overtime each year, just answering work emails and calls at home.

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With the help of OnePoll, Good Technology, which is a provider of secure email servers and other mobile technology systems, surveyed 1,000 current professionals and found an across-the-board seeping of the workday into after-hour life.

  • Nearly seven out of 10 workers say they check their email before 8 am.
  • Nearly one in two are still dealing with emails after 10 pm.
  • Almost two out of five (38 percent) admit to checking email during dinner.
  • Sixty nine percent won't go to bed without checking their work email.

The reasons for the constant checking varied.
  • Almost half of the workers said they felt they had to check because their customers demanded quick replies.
  • Sixty percent said checking kept them "organized."
  • A sizable minority (31 percent) said they found it hard to "switch off."

But the new work reality has an upside, insists John Herrema, Good Technology's senior vice president of corporate strategy. While employees do work more hours, many also appreciate the ability to "get work done whenever and wherever they need to -- whether that's in the office, on the road, or while sitting in the stands at a child's baseball game," he said.


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The blurring between the private and the professional has become so pervasive that well over half the survey respondents said there are no arguments whatsoever at home over answering emails or making work calls.

Good also conducted a similar poll in the United Kingdom and found a similar trend, if only on a lesser scale. Across the Atlantic, the average worker is putting in an extra three weeks of overtime per year, according to HR Magazine.

American workers, for their part, aren't retiring their time card without a fight. As was reported by AOL Jobs and USA Today in April, employees' lawsuits about overtime rose 32 percent last year since 2008. Among the targets of the ongoing lawsuits include giants GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson and Bristol-Myers Squib.

But not all disputes need to go as far as the courts. Most take place in our own minds. With the July 4th holiday tomorrow, will you be checking your email? Tell us below in the comments section about your plans.


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Filed under: Employment News
Dan Fastenberg

Dan Fastenberg

Associate Editor

Dan Fastenberg was most recently a reporter with TIME Magazine. Previously, he was a writer for the Thomson Reuters news service's Latin America desk. He was also a reporter and associate editor for the Buenos Aires Herald while living in South America.

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wantingbalance

Consistency in federal government. The Post Office losses are all attributable to the failure to recognize and utilize technology. The labor department has not yet recognized that "exempt" employees who generally get no overtime because their work is supposed to be able to be completed in a certain period of time, now spend an additional 6 weeks in overtime without pay. In thanks for my free year to my company (8.5 years times 6 weeks), my position is eliminated and shifted to a low-cost market.

July 07 2012 at 12:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mike at home

there is a time and place for every thing and once work ends unless you are a doctor nurse policeperson
military then you need time to be with your own life . I remember well the old saying this job will be here long after you are dead and gone so appricate life while it is their

July 06 2012 at 5:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bootymalone

I have a work smartphone and a personal smartphone. When I leave work my workphone stays in my desk. I have highly technical union job and if contacted while off work I receive an hours pay for each call and if it requires going on line to fix something or go to work, 3 hours minimum. These kind of work rules should be universal to keep employers from demanding work from employees when they are not getting paid.

July 06 2012 at 12:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
thetruenagrad

See, people appreciate the flexibility to do the work wherever whenever - however I'm willing to bet they haven't reduced their hours in the office to compensate for the extra time worked outside of normal business hours. Just another example of corporate America bleeding the workers dry.

Work life balance is important, and that is something that has been increasingly lost in the past 30 years. I was in a meeting a few months ago where our senior management made it clear that full time staff are really expected to be working closer to 50 hours a week, and people designated as 80% part time should really be closer to 40 hours a week.

The long and short of it is that we're being paid less (salaries not keeping up with inflation) for more work.

July 06 2012 at 8:50 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Jeff

With the invention of the internet we may be putting in more time at home answering email, but we're also spending more time at work surfing the web and getting nothing done. Take me for example. I'm sitting here reading articles like this instead of doing something worthwhile with my time.

July 06 2012 at 8:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Delaware Jack

Silly Question ! lol ...Of Course I checked my work emails today ! Ha !

July 04 2012 at 10:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ray allen

I used to have a retail manager who would call employees whenever he felt like it to ask product knowledge questions.

He just couldn't understand that a) employees have lives outside of work, and b) he was asking us to provide our knowledge and expertise without paying me for it.

We should have kept diaries and billed the head office for unpaid hours.

July 04 2012 at 10:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bootsnchaps60

Quite the contrary, I"m actively working on keeping work and home as separate as possible. Blurring the boundaries has damaged my physical and mental health and will lead to my retiring from my current job in a few months. It is not worth it! Unfortunately there are sometimes not so subtle inferences from employers that the work has to be done regardless of personal costs, and if you can't get the job done there are others to replace you.

July 04 2012 at 8:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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