Weekend Warriors: Who’s Working the Most Hours Outside the Office?

Katie Simon
Posted

work-weekendsThe higher you climb on the corporate ladder, the fewer weekend hours you’ll spend at the office, right?

Well, maybe not.

A new survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that top earners (earning upwards of $1,341 a week) were almost just as likely to work weekends as people in the lowest income bracket (making $520 per week or less).

In 2013, 34.4% of low earners worked weekends, and 32.7% of top earners did the same. (Surprisingly, just 23.5% of the second lowest income bracket made it into the office on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday.)

High and low earners likely work weekends for very different reasons. The top bracket may be aiming for a salary increase, better perks and greater job flexibility. The bottom bracket, on the other hand, may need to take a weekend shift to make ends meet or accept a job that requires hours outside the typical Monday through Friday routine.

It’s more typical to work weekends in certain industries and professions. Nearly half of sales professionals extend their workweek, while only 13.9% of construction and extraction workers do the same. Production workers log the most hours—an average of 7.6 hours on a weekend or holiday. A third of management, business and financial operations employees also work on weekends, but for less than four hours.

Even if they don’t head into the office during off-hours, the majority of Americans stay connected outside of work. Over half of all employees check their work messages over the weekend. 36% of employed Americans reported that this increased their workload, and 34% said it made it difficult to stop thinking about work.

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However, the majority of employees reported that increased use of communication technologies outside the office allowed them to be more productive overall, and encouraged more flexibility. Almost half noted that out-of-office communications improved their relationships with their co-workers, as well.

Interestingly, nearly three-fourths of working adults said they had control over whether they work beyond their regular schedule. So at the end of the (week)day, whether you work those weekend hours seems to be up to you.