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Unpaid overtime statistics disappointing, says TUC

Published: Thursday, 08 January 2009   Category: Life after graduation

More need to be done to reward professionals who regularly work long hours, it has been claimed.

Over five million people worked unpaid overtime in the UK during 2008, according to the Trades Union Congress (TUC), reporting a second successive year-on-year rise.

A figure of 5.24 million represents the highest figure since records began in 1992, it is reported, in figures which may alarm those working in graduate jobs.

The average amount of unpaid overtime is seven hours and six minutes, exactly the same as last year.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said it was "disappointing" that after years of progress, the numbers doing unpaid overtime had increased for the second year in a row.

He added: "While some of this is due to the longs-hours culture that still dogs too many British workplaces, the recession will now be making many people scared of losing their job in the year ahead and joining the ever-growing dole-queue."

Mr Barber said it was "inevitable" that people would be putting in extra hours if they think it can help protect against redundancy.

Last month, Monster human resources advisor Corinne Mills said that employer honesty was needed during the downturn in order to maintain staff morale levels.

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