The Average American Works 47 Hours Per Week, Gallup Finds

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Former Staff Writer
2 min read

For most entrepreneurs, the concept of a 40-hour workweek feels like a long-gone dream. And a brand-new Work and Education Survey courtesy of the analytics group Gallup would seem to indicate that you’re not alone.

In the U.S., the average full-time employee clocks in 47 hours per week, according to Gallup. That amounts to nearly one full day beyond the standard 9-to-5 threshold.

The 47 hour figure has remained largely consistent over the past 14 years, Gallup reports, even as the number of jobs began to plummet on the heels of the recession in 2007.

Related: 6 Tips for Succeeding as Both an Entrepreneur and a Parent

The survey, comprising 1,271 adults aged 18 and older, also concluded that pay structure has a significant impact upon hour count. Salaried employees, for instance, tend to work five more hours per week on average than employees who are paid on an hourly basis.

While it’s clear that full-time employees are working at a higher-than-expected rate, Gallup’s workplace management scientists suggest that “this doesn’t necessarily mean that workers logging long hours are suffering.” For instance, longer hours could point to greater engagement, they noted, which is far more important to employee wellbeing than time off.

Related: How Taking Time Off Can Help You Get Ahead

“Highly engaged workers who log well over 40 hours will still have better overall wellbeing than actively disengaged workers who clock out at 40 hours,” Gallup said.

Read additional findings from the report here.

While the average American workweek may remain at 47 hours, other countries are experimenting with new paradigms. France’s incumbent minister of economics proposed that the country look beyond its standard 35 hours, for instance, while Sweden’s second largest city of Gothenburg is currently experimenting with a 30-hour workweek.

Related: Why Your Team Needs YOU to Take a Summer Vacation

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