Traditional ‘nine-to-five’ working day is dead

May 27, 2010 | by | 0 Comments

The traditional ‘nine-to-five’ working day is dead, new research has shown.

Research revealed the typical employee is now at their desk by 8.28am and doesn’t head home until at least 5.29pm.

It also emerged the majority of workers now only manage to squeeze in a 33 minute lunch break.

One in five employees blamed pressure from bosses or a fear of looking bad in front of colleagues as reasons for arriving early and leaving later than their contract requires.

The extended day means the average worker grafts for five hours a week more than their contractual hours.

That’s equal to 33 working days a year or putting in an extra FOUR YEARS work during their life.

Clive Moxham of food brand Merchant Gourmet which commissioned the research, said: ”Brits are working harder than ever.

”Overtime has become part of our daily routine and working through breaks is commonplace so by the time we’ve travelled home and sat down we’re exhausted.

”Due to the time we start thinking about work and when we finally switch off our Blackberry, we’re spending almost 12 hours a day in ‘work mode’.

”This is affecting our diets, our health and our ability to unwind.

”We were particularly interested to see how these habits were affecting our health and diet.

”And, as the results show, it’s clear that pushing ourselves at work can have a detrimental effect on our personal lives.”

The study found workers wake up on average at 6.40am and start thinking about the day’s meetings and projects at 7.41am.

One in five busy Brits having breakfast in front of their computer and one in six plod on with daily tasks while munching through their lunch – but one in 14 don’t stop at all.

Half of the 4,000 respondents said they simply wouldn’t get the work done if they stuck to ‘normal’ hours, while one quarter said they stayed late in the hope it would lead to a pay rise or promotion.

But an unfortunate one in three workers are regularly at their desk before 8am in order to keep on top of their work.

Brits are also faced with an average 21 mile round trip commute which takes over an hour each day and sees them arrive home just after 6pm.

Yet after carrying out household chores, looking after the kids and cooking dinner, they don’t properly switch off until 7.18pm.

A quarter take work home with them by reading emails, sorting paperwork and preparing themselves for the next day.

One in six said it was far too easy to reply to an email with a Blackberry or laptop and one in eight are addicted to their work.

One in ten even went as far as to say they felt guilty for not working.

It also emerged the nation’s workforce don’t settle down until dinner until 8.05pm – which is an hour and a half later compared to two years ago.

Three in ten prioritise work over eating and a quarter feel their health is suffering because they are working too hard.

The typical office worker makes just three meals from scratch a week and eat two pieces of fruit or veg a day.

More than half have skipped evening meals and snacked instead at least three times in the last month and snacked instead because they get home too late

Despite Brits running themselves into the ground, seven in ten said they enjoyed their job.

Clive Moxham added: ”We were shocked to see how much our eating habits had changed as a result of the longer working day.

”Almost half of us don’t sit down for breakfast at home anymore. 62 per cent won’t leave the office during lunchtime and over half of us admit to having skipped an evening meal altogether because it’s too late to cook by the time we get home.

”It was encouraging to see that 57 per cent of respondents still cooked the majority of their evening meals from scratch.

”And, despite the demands of their working day, consumers still manage to find 25 minutes each night to prepare food.”

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