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.
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.
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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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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