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Workers under pressure to send and respond to emails outside of their working hours – New Survey

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As the Easter break approaches most employees are looking forward to some time off work – but a new survey published today shows the pressure people feel to stay in touch by email outside working hours.

The survey shows more than one in five people in full or part time work (21 per cent) feel pressure to read and send work emails out of office hours, with 46% doing so whilst on holiday

It finds more than half of workers (55 per cent) have sent a work email outside of working hours to a colleague.

Of those that said they email out of hours, more than one in three workers (68 per cent) have sent a working email on the weekend and half have sent an email whilst on holiday.

The survey of more than 2,000 adults (of which over 1,200 were workers) was carried out by YouGov on behalf of Firstsource, a leading business process management company.

It also found:

  • Young people feel the pressure more, with nearly a quarter of 25-34 year olds (24 per cent) in work saying they feel pressure to read and reply to work emails out of office hours.
  • Of those emailing out of hours, over half (53%) sent work emails before the start of the working day and nearly nine in ten (88 per cent) have sent work emails after the end of the working day.
  • The likelihood of sending an email out of hours declines according to age group – older workers in the 45-54 year old brackets are significantly less likely to have sent a work email out of hours (51 per cent) than younger workers 18 to 24 year olds (68%), and only 41 per cent of over 55 year olds have done so.
  • Men are much more likely than women to send a work email before the beginning of the working day (58 per cent to 48 per cent).
  • One per cent of workers sent a work email on Christmas Day and one in twenty people (5 per cent) sent a work email on Boxing Day, with 25-34 year olds and 35-44 year olds equally the most likely workers to be sending emails on Boxing Day (7 per cent).
  • Over two thirds of working Londoners (68 per cent) have sent a work email out of hours compared to half (50 per cent) of workers in the North.
  • Nearly 3 in 10 (29 per cent) of working Londoners feel pressure to write or respond to work emails out of office hours compared to just 17 per cent of people in the North.

James Eyre, Vice President Marketing at Firstsource Solutions, said:

“Technology has opened up so many new options in terms of how we live and work. We can now choose to work from home or on the move. However, this survey clearly shows that a proportion of the UK workforce now feel pressure to stay in touch with their employees outside work hours.”

Notes for Editors:

If you mention any results from this survey please credit ‘Firstsource Solutions, a leading business process Management Company’. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 2,168 adults, of which 1,252 were full or part time workers. Fieldwork was undertaken between 3rd – 4th March 2015.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+)

About Firstsource Solutions:

Firstsource (NSE: FSL, BSE: 532809, Reuters: FISO.BO, Bloomberg: FSOL@IN) is a leading global provider of customized Business Process Management (BPM) services to the Healthcare Telecom & Media and Banking & Financial Services industries. The company’s clients include Fortune 500, FTSE 100 & Nifty 50 companies. Firstsource has a “rightshore” delivery model with operations in India, Philippines, Sri Lanka, UK and U.S. www.firstsource.com

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