Overworked? Not as much as you were five years ago

The high levels of unpaid overtime worked by IT professionals are beginning to fall, a Trades Union Congress analysis of official figures shows.

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The high levels of unpaid overtime worked by IT professionals are beginning to fall, a Trades Union Congress analysis of official figures shows.

The analysis of figures from the government’s Labour Force Survey, published to mark the TUC’s Work Your Proper Hours Day today.

IT professionals put in an average six hours and six minutes of unpaid overtime a week, the analysis shows. This would be worth more than £5,000 a year if paid at the average hourly rate.

But the average level of unpaid overtime has fallen by 36 minutes over the last five years.

Less qualified staff categorised by the Labour Force Survey as working in IT service delivery occupations have seen a bigger drop in unpaid overtime – down by an hour and six minutes over the past five years, to an average four hours and 36 minutes.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “Work Your Proper Hours Day is both a bit of fun and a chance to ask some serious questions about work-life balance in every sector of the economy. The best we can say is that our long hours culture is not getting any worse – and there are some real, but slow, signs of progress in IT over the last five years.

“But we need to speed this up. Regular excess unpaid overtime is a recipe for burn-out and inefficiency. It is working stupid not working smart.”

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