IT professionals are missing out on thousands of pounds of unpaid overtime according to the latest figures from the TUC.
The organisation has claimed that one in three IT professionals are giving away an average of 34 days of unpaid overtime a year, suggesting that the recession has not reduced the pressure on working time for people in the sector.
According to the TUC, today is Work Your Proper Hours Day, when the average person who does unpaid overtime would start to get paid if they did all their unpaid overtime at the start of the year.
This compares with the previous year’s figure of 32 days, which amounts to five hours 48 minutes of free work per week.
Although the TUC is praising employees’ efforts to help their companies through the economic downturn, it is warning that the problem of excessive long hours still needs to be addressed in UK workplaces, especially in tougher times as it can lead to stress and burnout, which can lower productivity.
Brendan Barber, TUC General Secretary, said: “The recession is bringing new pressure for people to work unpaid overtime, and even more IT professionals are doing unpaid overtime than last year.
“But not all unpaid overtime is useful work helping to overcome the recession. When people understandably fear for their jobs employers still have a responsibility to organise work properly and ensure their workplaces don’t get gripped by a long hours culture.
“It would be wrong to replace a ‘last person to leave gets a better chance of promotion’ attitude with a ‘last person to leave is least likely to be made redundant’ view. Employers should think about the harm that long hours week-in-week-out does to the firm and staff – its greatest asset.”
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