Health, relationships and productivity bear brunt of connectivity 'epidemic'

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The latest research shows Australians now do an average of 4.6 hours of unpaid work every week. That adds up to more than six weeks in a year. One researcher calls it 'time theft' and says it is linked to a connectivity epidemic | AnnaPattySMH

When management consultant Francis Baldinu started work in another city, he would return to his hotel room, order takeaway and switch on his laptop again.

To end what he describes as an epidemic of "time theft", Centre for Future Work researcher Bill Browne says regulators need to enforce rules on maximum work hours and allow people more choice to refuse overtime and to work shorter hours. Individual workers also have a role to play in demanding respect for their right to leisure time.

"That helped me a lot with work-life balance. When I was sitting in my hotel room and working at night and not doing anything else, I was not engaging in life outside work." "I try not to associate my home with work. I would rather keep working in the office until midnight if I have a deadline to meet, so I don't open my laptop at home," he says.Dubravka Cecez-Kecmanovic from the University of NSW Business School has conducted research on constant connectivity and describes it as an "epidemic" that is causing burnout and mental health problems in the workforce.

"It's like a drug almost, that you feel you have to respond. It's nothing for me to still be messaging people late at night or checking my phone at 4am. I'm worried that I might miss something, but it's just ridiculous isn't it, I mean no one is dying," the HR director told researchers. “A lot of attention has focused on wage theft, but Australian workers are also struggling with ‘time theft’.”

 

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AnnaPattySMH But what's the other choice? There aren't exactly that many jobs just lying around. If all the jobs expect extra hours unpaid. There's not really another option other than accepting it.

AnnaPattySMH Easy.. lose the phone and SMH starts printing again as well

AnnaPattySMH There’d be a bit of Facebook time or net surfing on the employers time happening too.

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