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Workers clocked in more weekend hours in 2022 than in 2021, according to ActivTrak

Yahoo FInance Live anchors Dave Briggs and Seana Smith examine Americans' work-life balance as an ActivTrak study reports workers clocked in more hours on weekends in 2022 than in 2021.

Video Transcript

- Did you wake up this morning feeling refreshed from the weekend off, ready to dive back in and conquer the workweek ahead? Or are you part of a growing number of Americans working weekends, answering emails at your sons' and daughters' games and recitals? It seems remote work has forever blurred the workweek lines and really broken the barrier that used to come with Friday happy hour.

The average hours worked on Saturday and Sunday increased 5% to 6.6 hours, according to ActivTrak, which analyzed more than 130,000 workers. Two industry highlights here-- computer hardware companies saw some of the biggest increases in weekend work. The average total hours increased more than 30% to over 11 hours. And media industry companies, we know about this one, increasing weekend hours worked 53%, over 10 hours. These industries recorded more weekend work than any other.

Said ActivTrak's vice president, quote, "as people become more comfortable with flexibility, it's acceptable to log off at 3:00 PM on Friday and deal with work on the weekend." This, however, is a super slippery slope, one I don't recommend you go down. Key caveat here-- I pester all my fellow employees with weekend emails on a consistent basis. But I have problems. I don't wish them upon any of you.

Glassdoor data shows burnout is up 40% since pre-pandemic. And weekend work will only pour gasoline on the burnout fire. The UK, on the other hand, just showed tremendous results from the opposite, a four-day workweek in where essentially no drop in productivity and an increase in mental health. The conclusion here is don't be me. That's what I'm trying to tell you all, Seana.

- You don't have to tell me me twice.

- I think people need to lay off the computer, the iPhone, all of it on the weekend. Refresh so you're not burned out because it is an overwhelming trend in our country right now. People are burned out. They're stressed out. They've got really bad mental health. I know you're looking at me because I'm literally the poster child of it.

- No one makes me work, though.

- What are you going to do then with all your time? You're gonna have a lot more hours on the weekend.

- Let me say, no one asks me to work here. I just, again, have an addiction to it. So personal problem.

- Yeah. I think more and more people are working on the weekends. Obviously, this study points exactly to that. I think it's very hard to draw that line, whether or not you're working remotely, even if you are in the office five days a week. I think our phone, the fact that we are always accessible makes it very hard to totally detach from work. I think most people I in my personal life do work on the weekends.

I view it as a way to get ahead for the week. I view it so you're not as stressed on Monday morning if you take some time some time, especially on Sunday morning or Sunday afternoon, to set yourself up for the week. I personally think that my mental health benefits from that. But it's important not to go overboard.

- That is a very interesting revelation. So you take, what, 30 minutes?

- No. Yeah. Or you can read up. I mean, it depends. It, honestly, varies. Whatever you need to do.

- But it helps your mental health because otherwise--

- It helps me mental health.

- --you'd wake up Monday morning and it would come like a flood at you.

- That is tremendous because I really am concerned about mental health in the workplace. That is something I talk about often. And maybe that is-- I did not ever think about it that way.

- Yeah. I think it sets me up to be a little bit more calmer on Monday morning. You're not running around-- the wheels aren't spinning constantly, or at least as much maybe as they potentially would be. Real quick, though, two of the big reasons why people are doing this. It's because the Zooms and constant Slacks, it's hard to get away from those. They take up a lot of the time during the workweek.

And then also, not only that, it also has to do with the fact that you're constantly interrupted. That could cost you, what, $100 million per year in terms of companies that are lost in productivity because of the fact that people are constantly on their phones. And then the other thing is that job cuts. You're responsible for more. You're doing more in your day to day.

- We should have had a poll, a Yahoo Finance poll asking how many of you work weekends. We'll have to do that after the fact.

- I bet more people than you think do.

- I'm really interested to find out.