Indian office workers facing an overtime epidemic

77 per cent of Indian professionals opine that they feel like getting closer to working a six-day week


While the world is trying to adapt a four-day work week, Indian professionals seem to be moving backwards. As per a survey done by an IT company Citrix, 77 per cent of Indian professionals opine that they feel like getting closer to working a six-day week. Truly this seems to be like an overtime epidemic.

OnePoll, on behalf of Citrix, interviewed around 500 working professionals across private and government sectors in the country, for this survey.

Close to 60 per cent of the respondents of the survey accept that they work outside their regular office hours. The engagement is in the form of joining work-related calls, sending emails or instant messages for work purposes.

So what forces them to do so? No, it isn’t only for monetary benefits, though around 34 percent agreed to have got paid for this overtime, while another 34 per cent felt that it would improve their chances of getting a promotion or a bonus. There were also others, who had the desire to set an example or do the extra work and many blame it on the work culture.

Around 45 per cent of the respondents believe that improved processes aided by better technology can help reduce the extra time overload.

Blame it on the employer

Does this mean that four day a week is a distant dream? Seems likely! Over one-third (38 per cent) of the respondents opine that it’ll take at least five years for their employer to be able to offer a four-day work week on the same salary as a five-day work week. Add to that another 20 per cent feel that their employer would never be able to offer a four-day week. On the contrary, a staggering 97 per cent said they were keen to adopt a four-day work week if given the opportunity provided there it meets their terms and conditions – 62 per cent said they would only agree for a 4-day week only if they were offered the same salary.

While businesses feel that shorter work week would have an adverse effect on productivity and work culture, around 80 per cent of office workers agree that a national four-day work week is not achievable because it requires a cultural shift in how we approach or define work. Close to 88 per cent of respondents agree that future productivity levels will only improve if businesses embrace different ways and attitudes towards work; while 78 per cent of the respondents agree that an outdated approach to the working week is holding back businesses from their potential productivity.

Probably smart working is an answer to this problem and help us inch closer to the goal. How organisations take this up is for all of us to ponder.

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