No Time to Lose: A Search for Work / Life Balance

“Staff take 22-minute lunch hour” by notimetolose
June 24, 2008, 7:58 pm
Filed under: news articles | Tags: , , ,

Reposted from via mention of a colleague

“Staff take 22-minute lunch hour”
Tuesday June 24 2008

Work is eating into the average lunch break which now stands at 22 minutes, a survey has found.

And three out of four employees are under so much pressure to get work done they are choosing to take their break at their desks.

While the second most popular food choice three years ago was the traditional pub lunch, such a leisurely option no longer ranks in the top five.

A poll of 2,672 employees across Ireland found a jacket potato [aka baked potato — ed.] was the most popular food choice for a work meal-time, followed by fruit, pre-packed salad, pre-packed sandwiches and chips.

The average time spent taking a lunch break has dropped by just over half from 45 minutes when the survey was last carried out in 2005 by recruitment firm Peninsula Ireland, which advises workers on employment law.

“Irish employees are finding themselves too far behind at work to take a full lunch hour,” said Peninsula Ireland chief Alan Price.

Instead, many were choosing to eat at their desks and weren’t taking a proper amount of rest.

Mr Price said such a practice was “counter-productive” because it made staff tired at the end of the day and led to poorer quality of work.

Mr Price said Irish employers were legally obliged to give employees an hour’s break if they worked an eight-hour shift.

“Employees are well within their rights to demand they are given appropriate breaks and I would advise them to ensure that they take their full hour’s entitlement,” he said.

“A full break allows workers to rest and refresh themselves so they are ready for the afternoon. There are laws in place for a reason and it is actually less efficient for employees to take short breaks as productivity and work rate suffer.”

(also covered by and RTÉ.ie)

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