UK employees work the longest hours in the EU
UK employees work the longest hours in the EU but are the least productive – and office flirting may be to blame
The British work the longest hours in the EU, but are less productive than those in some other countries.
Full-time employees in the UK worked an average 42 hours a week last year, almost two more than the typical EU worker.
Employees in other countries, including Germany and Denmark, produce more than their counterparts over here, even though they work fewer hours.
Full-time employees in Germany, for example, work 1.8 hours a week less but are 14.6% more productive.
And in Denmark – the EU country with the shortest hours – workers put in over four hours less than UK workers, but productivity in Denmark is 23.5% higher.
A new study indicates there may be a simple reason for the gap – the British office culture.
The research found that the average office worker spends up to five hours a day on non-work related activity, including flirting and chatting with colleagues, online shopping and tea breaks.
When you combine this with the fact that British workers stay longer in the office than their European counterparts, it’s no wonder the output per hour is lower!
British workers have routinely admitted that they stayed at work longer than they needed to because all their colleagues did.
In fact, around one in ten workers said they worked overtime with the sole purpose of looking busy, not because of the pressure of the work.