Aussies put in the extra hours but don’t get paid

Most Australians work overtime and, more often than not, don’t get paid for doing so, according to an online survey of more than 3000 employees conducted by Coredata and News.com.au.

The survey found that 92% of respondents had worked overtime in the previous week, with three quarters of those saying they worked longer hours because that was the only way they could get their work done.

And that workload appears to be growing, with workers saying they put in an average 10.5 hours above the 38 hour standard week; one hour more than was reported in the last survey in May 2007.

And a total 79% said they did not get paid extra for the privilege of working late, with 84% of professionals and a surprisingly high 52% of non-professionals reporting they performed the extra work gratis.

That may be connected with another finding of the survey – people employed on AWAs were less likely to report having a choice about whether or not to work overtime than people on awards or collective agreements.

Of those who did get some compensation for overtime, 61% received time off in lieu and 44% received extra pay.

Given the general shift towards greater flexibility, it is also somewhat startling that most employees (62%) who work overtime would have liked to put in those extra hours from home but said their employer would not let them do so.

 

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