WORKERS’ OPINION OF OFFICE HOURS ARE EVOLVING

By August 7, 2017Blog

The traditional eight-hour workday may soon be the exception rather than the rule, and Washington, D.C. is paving the way for change. According to new CareerBuilder research, 73 percent of workers in the nation’s capital think the traditional 9 to 5 work day is a thing of the past. This compares to 68 percent in both Boston and Los Angeles, and 66 percent in New York. Other city breakdowns include:

  • Chicago: 60 percent
  • Dallas: 62 percent
  • Houston: 58 percent
  • Miami: 55 percent
  • Philadelphia: 55 percent

“Between new technology and global workplace dynamics, companies are being tasked to implement flexible work arrangements for everyone, across cities, generations and industries,” said Rosemary Haefner, chief human resources officer at CareerBuilder. “Many companies fear that without a set schedule, employees will be distracted, not as engaged and less productive, but the opposite is often true. A trusting work environment breeds more-loyal employees and increases efficiency as long as there’s structure around it.”

Overall, more than 3 in 5 workers (61 percent) say the traditional 9-5 workday is an idea of the past, a belief held more so by those ages 45-54 (68 percent), compared to those 18-24 (45 percent), 25-34 (59 percent), 35-44 (61 percent) or 55+ (64 percent).

Broken down by industry, those in leisure and hospitality are most likely to think traditional hours are outdated (75 percent), followed by those in sales (64 percent) and IT (62 percent).

The national study was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder from May 24 to June 16, 2017 among a representative sample of 3,696 full-time workers across industries in the U.S., including 3,462 in the private sector.

Working Around the Clock

While those in D.C. might think traditional hours are out the door, they’re not necessarily the ones most often working outside of office hours. Those in Boston and Dallas (both 54 percent) are most likely to report working outside office hours, followed by Washington, D.C. (53 percent). Other city breakdowns include:

  • Los Angeles: 50 percent
  • Chicago: 48 percent
  • New York: 43 percent
  • Philadelphia: 43 percent
  • Houston; 42 percent
  • Miami: 41 percent

Overall, nearly half of workers (48 percent) keep working off the clock – a trait more common in men (53 percent) than women (43 percent) and those ages 18-24 (52 percent) than any other age group – 25-34 (45 percent); 35-44 (48 percent); 45-54 (49 percent); 55+ (46 percent).

Around half of workers (52 percent) check or respond to emails outside of work.

Three Time Management Strategies That Help Manage Flexibility

Even though you may not be working the typical 9-to-5 workday, it may be a good idea to keep these three strategies to keep in mind as you plan your work life, get your projects completed and strive for a sense of work-life balance:

  • Know the rules: Even in a flexible environment, there are rules. It could be that you’re given free rein in terms of when you arrive and when you leave, or, there may be ranges of time when your employer expects you to be in. Make sure you’re aware of what’s expected and stay within those boundaries.
  • Get into a rhythm: Others on the team will undoubtedly need to know when you’re coming or going. Maybe Mondays you’re in early and out early, and Fridays you arrive later than usual to get an early morning workout in. Make it easy for your team to know when they can drop by your desk and chat about the latest project.
  • Remember that deliverables come first: Make sure you know what you’re expected to deliver and when. Enjoying the freedom of self-scheduling works best when you assure your boss the work will get done on time and as committed.

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