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This Is How Much Unpaid Overtime Brits Do In A Year

Nick Levine
·2-min read

Brits are working more than a thousand hours of unpaid overtime every year, according to new research.

This equates to a 42 days of unpaid overtime over the course of a year – 50% more than the statutory 28 days of annual leave we’re entitled to.

The research by Hitachi Personal Finance found that nearly half (49%) of Brits start their working day earlier, and nearly half (48%) admit to finishing it late.

Nearly a third (32%) of Brits said they either arrive at the office or log on while working from home 20 minutes early each day. Over the course of their working lives, this adds up to a massive 147 days of unpaid overtime.

Some 2% of Brits said they start work an hour before their official start time, which adds up to 917 days on unpaid work across their working lifetime.

Meanwhile, more than three in five Brits who responded to the survey said they would like to achieve a better work/life balance.

Though working from home has cut out the arduous daily commute for many of us, this hasn’t necessarily led to more free time. Research published in May found that Brits were putting in an additional 28 hours a month while working remotely.

Chris O’Sullivan of the Mental Health Foundation warned at the time that workplace burnout is a very real risk if you’re working longer and with additional stress during the pandemic.

“People working from home during these unprecedented times are at a greater risk of burnout due to the high-stakes environment we find ourselves in both globally and personally,” he said.

“We cannot have the same business as usual expectations on ourselves or of our employees – there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to work full time, look after children at home and keep up our other responsibilities.”

If you’re keen to give your work-life balance an instant boost, check out our recent guide to making the most of your annual leave in 2021.

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