Projects to complete, demands for customer deliveries, reduced workforce during holiday periods… There are many motivations to accumulate overtime hours. However, be careful not to abuse them! Subject to regulation, overtime hours are sometimes practised a little too freely by companies on the edge being legal. And employees are not fooled, according to a study by the Kronos Institute.
A large majority of workers bound by a contract stipulating their number of hours to be worked believe that their company goes beyond the laws and regulations that oversee the use of overtime. This is what a study conducted by the Kronos Institute found, putting employment practices around the world into perspective. Inclined, or constrained, to perform these overtime schedules, employees are no less aware of the laws governing them. The most aware of these violations are those from China and India of whom 88% and 81% respectively noted that their management undoubtedly requires too much from their workforce.
A universal practise
Commonplace in both hemispheres and regardless of the companies and industries that use them, some regions are marked by massive use of this flexible solution and productivity guarantee. Focusing on hourly workers in Brazil, Australia, Canada, China, the United States and the United Kingdom, the study was able to point out that in each of these countries more than half of employees are regularly offered the opportunity to work a few hours longer than what was initially provided for in their contract… or the law.
82% of Indians, 80% of Chinese, 79% of Britons, 77% of Brazilians, 61% of Americans and 52% of Canadians are regularly asked by their company to increase their working time.
From opportunity to requirement
The chance to increase their income by the end of the month is attractive to many workers: out of 10,123 workers interviewed for the survey, 92% of Brazilians, Americans and Canadians confirmed their willingness and satisfaction of being able to work more. This reality, and a savings, is reflected very differently in other regions of the world, including the West. Overtime work, not simply offered but required, as an opportunity often used by companies to ensure production and meet obligations, can also be had with pressure by the employer on employees. This is what was reported by 68% of Indians, 67% of Chinese, 58% of Britons and 37% of Australians, forced by their management to increase their hours of work. It is a requirement that is often outside the legal framework and which could backfire on the company if employees so compelled were to assert their rights.