A new Gallup Poll released on Friday, August 29th confirms what most of us know already — that most Americans work more than 40 hours a week. Data from Gallup’s annual Work and Education Survey shows that full-time U.S. employees work an average of 47 hours per week. Moreover, only 42% of full-time workers actually put in a 40-hour week, 50% work more than 40 hours a week, 39% work at least 50 hours a week and 18% work more than 60 hours a week.
There are a number of factors involved in Americans having such a long average work week. Part of it certainly relates to the need for many lower income Americans to work more than 40 hours to make ends meet. Another related factor to our longer workweek is that a growing number of people are taking on more than one job. Earlier Gallup Poll data showed that 86% of full-time workers have one job, 12% have two and 1% have three or more.
The data here is from Gallup’s annual Work and Education Survey. The combined sample for 2013 and 2014 included 1,271 adults, 18 and older, who are employed full time.
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Work Week – Salaried workers work longer hours
The results of the 2014 Gallup Work and Education Survey also show that salaried employees work an average of five hours more per week than full-time hourly workers (49 hours vs. 44 hours). Furthermore, a solid 25% of salaried employees say they put in at least 60 hours per week. This statistic makes it clear that while salaried workers typically enjoy greater income than their hourly colleagues, they do pay a real price in terms of reduced personal time.
Work Week – Full-time and part-time statistics
However, it should be noted that the number of hours that all U.S. full-time employees say they typically work each week has remained relatively steady over the past 15 years, with the exception of a decline to just under 45 hours in 2005. Also of interest, Gallup analysts Lydia Saad highlights that part-time workers have generally averaged around 20 hours per week less than full-timers over the same period, although the precise figure varies more significantly for part-timers.