Extra work demands on staff cost employers more than overtime pay

Employers take note: if your employees are working longer hours without reward, 62 per cent of them will find ways to reward themselves at your expense, according to the ADP Time & Attendance Poll. The poll, commissioned by ADP Canada, reveals that 21 per cent of Canadians are now working more hours per week to keep up, and among them, four in 10 (37 per cent) receive no additional compensation or time off.

“If you don’t compensate people who are working extra hard, many will reward themselves - at your expense,” says Heather Nairn-Rand, ADP Canada’s vice president, marketing.

Slowing economy, changing work habits
Regardless of how, or if, they get compensated or rewarded, today’s lean economy is requiring many Canadians to change their work habits, according to the poll.

•     Twenty per cent of working Canadians say they are changing their work habits, doing things such as taking work home more often, working through lunch or avoiding taking sick days, as a result of the slowing economy.

•     Twenty-one per cent of working Canadians say they’re working more hours per week.

•     Among the 21 per cent working more hours:

  • Twenty-eight per cent are logging from one to five hours more per week;
  • Four in 10 (42 per cent) say they are working from six to10 additional hours per week; and
  • Twenty-eight per cent are working 11 or more additional hours per week.

Working hard, or hardly working?
“Working longer doesn’t always mean working smarter,” says ADP Canada’s Nairn-Rand. According to the ADP poll, employees who take their own payback for extra work typically do the following:

  • Leave early (53 per cent)
  • Work at a more leisurely pace (27 per cent)
  • Take sick days when they are not sick (23 per cent)
  • Take longer lunch breaks (21 per cent)
  • Arrive late (16 per cent)

However, more than one third (35 per cent) of those who are working longer hours say they do receive extra pay, and 17 per cent receive extra time off. Quebeckers are most likely (53 per cent) to receive extra pay for extra work, followed by those in Atlantic Canada (37 per cent) and BC (35 per cent each); Ontarians are least likely to receive extra pay (21 per cent). Atlantic Canadians are most likely to receive extra time off (21 per cent).

Sick day policies
Perhaps another area of concern for employers is losses from employee absence, with 11 per cent of Canadians planning to use all of their sick days this year. Younger employees aged 18-29 are more than twice as likely (18 per cent) to max out their sick days versus their much older colleagues who are 50 and up (7 per cent), according to the ADP Time & Attendance Poll. Other sick day stats:

  • Eight in 10 (81 per cent) working Canadians say they are allotted a certain number of sick days by their employer.  Eleven per cent of Canadians say their employer does not have a sick day policy and five per cent don’t know.
  • Employees in Manitoba and Saskatchewan report that they receive the greatest number of sick days, with over half (58 per cent) saying that they receive 10 or more sick days per year. Just 27 per cent of workers in Quebec say they receive the same allotment.
  • Women are more likely to take sick days even if they are not sick at 14 per cent, compared to eight per cent for men.

From January 22 to 28, 2009, Environics Research Group interviewed 956 respondents who are employed full time/part time and the margin of error is +/-3.17 per cent at 95 per cent. Margins of error will be higher when looking at regional samples.  The results have been statistically weighted according to 2006 age, gender and region Census data to ensure a sample representative of the Canada’s entire adult population. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

For more information about ADP call 1-866-228-9675 or visit www.adp.ca