24/02/2006

Senior managers top overtime table

Senior managers have overtaken teachers as the workers who put in the most unpaid overtime, the TUC has said.

The union found that top managers who do unpaid hours put in on average an extra 12 hours of unpaid work each week - an increase of more than two hours from 2005.

If they were paid for their unpaid overtime, the TUC said, they would earn an extra £24,000 per year.

Teachers also worked long unpaid hours, working on average an extra 11 hours and 36 minutes each week unpaid. They would earn nearly £10,000 a year extra if they were paid for their time, the TUC said.

The TUC's annual league table of unpaid overtime was published to coincide with 'Work Your Proper Hours' day - the day that the average employee doing unpaid hours would start to get paid if they did all their extra time at the start of the year.

The league table, which is derived from the official 60,000 strong Labour Force Survey, shows that managerial and professional staff dominate the top of the table. However, the TUC also found that less senior staff in IT, law, accountancy and finance were also likely to put in almost an extra day of unpaid work a week.

The TUC said that there had been some slow progress, as nearly a quarter of a million fewer employees now worked unpaid overtime. However, there was just a six minute fall in average unpaid overtime last year and the TUC said that the UK still has the longest average hours for full-time workers in the EU.

As part of 'Work Your Proper Hours' day, workers are being urged to work only their proper hours, leave on time and take their proper breaks.

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: "'Work Your Proper Hours' day is an opportunity for a bit of fun after work and during lunch breaks up and down the country. But it should also make us all think seriously not just about our own work-life balance, but also about whether we can organise our workplaces better so that we can be just as productive, but get home a bit earlier.

"We are beginning to cut the UK's working hours, but there is still a long way to go before the UK gets anywhere near the European average."

(KMcA/GB)


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