Burning the Midnight Oil: Weekend Poll Results

With thanks to all who are participating in my Weekend Polls, here are the results of this past weekend’s poll, which I’ve now closed. The focus of this past weekend’s poll: How typical is it for you to work into the evening hours?

73% of you are known to your evening and/or security staff

offices-at-night-up-close-copyright-shelagh-donnellyThat’s a pretty telling indicator … and unsurprising, when you consider that 43% of respondents reported that they typically spend 9.5 or more hours in the office.

What’s the latest you’ve worked?

Hmm. It seems that we could use the words “late” and “early” interchangeably. While 7% of respondents haven’t worked later than 7:00 p.m., 40% of respondents have worked later than 11:00 p.m. 20% of respondents have worked until 1:00 a.m. or later.

What drives these late hours, and are you compensated?

For 45% of respondents, it’s sheer workload. Events are a factor for 29% of you, while meetings are the primary factor for 21% of you. Less than half the respondents – 45% – receive compensation, either in time off or financially. The irony? As one person put it, there is in theory the capacity to take time off in lieu of hours worked … but this rarely happens, due to workload. Read on for full details.


How many hours (rounded up to the half hour) do you typically spend in the office each day? 

  • 7.5 hours: 7% of respondents
  • 8 hours: 10% of respondents
  • 8.5 hours: 20% of respondents
  • 9 hours: 20% of respondents
  • 9.5 hours: 10% of respondents
  • 10 hours: 20% of respondents
  • 10.5 hours: 3.33% of respondents
  • 11 hours: 3.33% of respondents
  • 12 hours: 3.33 % of respondents
  • 3% of respondents selected “Other”. One commented, “6 hours – part time job”.

How frequently do workload or events require that you work longer than the traditional work day?

  • never: 7% of respondents
  • one or two times a month: 21% of respondents
  • three to five times a month: 24% of respondents
  • six to eight times a month: 7% of respondents
  • nine to 10 times a month: 28% of respondents
  • 14% of respondents selected “Other”. People provided comments as follows.
    • Pretty much every day / most days / at least 75% of the time
    • One to two times a quarter

What’s the latest (rounded up to the next hour) you’ve ever worked in the evening? 

  • 6:00 p.m.: 7% of respondents
  • 7:00 p.m.: 13% of respondents
  • 8:00 p.m.: 7% of respondents
  • 9:00 p.m.: 17% of respondents
  • 10:00 p.m.:17% of respondents
  • 11:00 p.m.: 10% of respondents
  • midnight: 10% of respondents
  • 1:00 a.m.: 3% of respondents
  • 2:00 a.m.: 10% of respondents
  • 3:00 a.m.: 7% of respondents
  • One person clicked on the “Leave a Comment” icon and wrote, “I prefer to work at the beginning of the day as well, so will routinely be in before 7am in the morning – generally it is before 6.30 and I will then leave the office around 6.30 /7 at night”

Are you more likely to work into the evening because of workload or meetings/events?

  • Workload: 45% of respondents
  • Events: 29% of respondents
  • Meetings: 21% of respondents
  • 5% of respondents selected “Other”. Their comments included the following.
    • “evening assistant in intl law firm”
    • “Unexpected projects/mandates”

When you work into the evening hours, are you compensated?  

  • No; I’m not compensated: 52% of respondents
  • Yes; I’m compensated in time off: 26% of respondents
  • Yes; I’m compensated financially: 19% of respondents
  • 3% of respondents selected “Other”. One person wrote, “In theory I can the time off in lieu, but due to workload rarely take it”

Do you leave the office at fairly routine hours but also bring work home or log on from home to work?

  • No: 35% of respondents
  • Yes; I do so once or twice a month: 24% of respondents
  • Yes; I do so once or twice a week: 10% of respondents
  • Yes; I do so up to three nights weekly: 7% of respondents
  • Yes; I do so up to four nights weekly: 17% of respondents
  • 7% of respondents selected “Other”. Their comments included the following.
    • “leave work late and also continue to check emails once gone”
    • “Not ‘official’ work – but I’m thinking through what needs to be accomplished”

Do your evening cleaning staff and/or security staff know your name or face? 

  • Yes; they know me: 73% of respondents
  • No; they don’t typically see me: 23% of respondents
  • 3% of respondents of respondents selected “Other”. One commented, “They come in the morning and I am there at 06:15 hrs.”

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: