DTI calls for better working hours

IT workers will be spending less time tinkering with servers and Linux kernels in 2004 if the Department for Trade & Industry...

IT workers will be spending less time tinkering with servers and Linux kernels in 2004 if the Department for Trade & Industry makes progress with its work/life balance campaign.

To help launch the campaign, the DTI has published a survey of more than 2,000 workers from a variety of industries which showed that employees want to spend more time with friends and family and take up recreational activities.

"In recent years employers have made great strides in improving work/life balance practices," said DTI minister Patricia Hewitt. However, she added, many employees felt that more could be done.

Almost 90% of workers want more time at home and 70% want to go to the theatre, cinema or art galleries more often, the report said. Other desired pursuits included reading more (65%), learning a new language (60%), playing more sport (55%) and doing voluntary work (45%).

The survey found that although 30% felt they were spending too much time at work at the expense of their pastimes and their families, 40% claimed to have already changed their working hours to improve their lives.

The DTI is calling on employees and employers to consider flexible working patterns, part-time working, job sharing, staggered hours and term-time-only working, and increased use of flexi-time, compressed hours, annualised hours, shift swapping, flexible working locations and benefits such as childcare, health facilities and financial packages.
This was last published in January 2004

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