This weeks round up is a little different as we’re just covering one topic: How much overtime we give away to our employers for free.
Today, workers in Britain are being urged to leave work at 4pm in protest of all the unrecognised hours we put in at work.
All the way back in 2009 I linked to an article about how we worked extra hours for free as we were afraid of our job security and in almost 10 years it would seem that little had changed.
According to the work hour proper hours page from the TUC:
UK workers gave their employers £31.2 billion of free labour last year, doing a grand total of two billion hours unpaid overtime.
The Independent newspaper breaks it down even further stating the average UK worker does an extra 2 hours a day which works out to be 469 hours a year.
I don’t know about you but that’s money I’d like to have in my pocket!
In America the situation isn’t much better. Working hours started to be tracked in the 1890s and they were shocked to see the average working week was over 100 hours!
Europe was in front of the US when it came to writing working hours into law – you can view a brief history here but the United States has the advantage over the UK that lower earning workers are guaranteed overtime pay whereas here in the UK we usually just get offered time off in lieu – although your average pay for the number of hours worked mustn’t drop below the minimum wage.
Surprisingly, despite the country’s reputation, China have some of the best overtime protection for employees
Although I’m not sure limiting how many hours people can work if they’d like to do more is wholly fair, and I’m sure if an unscrupulous employer doesn’t pay overtime they won’t worry about working hours!
The country with the worst working hours? Check out this interesting chart to find out – I think you’ll find the top country rather surprising.
Remember that if you’re on an hourly rate, then you need to ensure that all the extra time you’re working is being logged properly, it’s a bit more difficult if you’re a contracted employee.
If you’re salaried then perhaps your compensation package is worth you giving your company a few extra hours a week.
That being said though, it’s essential you ensure that you have a good work/life balance and have enough time to spend on yourself and your family.
It’s also important to remember that working too many hours can be bad due your health though – despite the financial rewards you might think that you are getting, working too long may have implications for your health.
We’re all aware that working long hours can lead to increased stress levels, poor sleep patterns, a short temper, reduced immune responses and more.
Not sure whether the negative impacts of work are real? Check them out in the following infographic:
Infographic From Visually.
So, at 3.45pm today pack up your stuff and be ready to leave at 4pm on the dot, and if you want to make sure you get your work done on time the Official 4pm Finish Redbull Page has a Spotify playlist to get you motivated.
Let me know in the comments below if you manage to get away on time!
Have A Great Weekend
Until next week, Stay Productive!