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					Hours and hours
of work…
The issue of working hours has long been a contentious one in the
finance sector.
To help the Finance Sector Union better understand our member’s views
about hours of work and specifically its impact on work/life balance, we
undertook a major survey at the end of 2005.
The response was overwhelming with more than 7,000 members sending
us their views on this important subject – this pamphlet sets out the main
results.
The information gathered is extremely important and will inform FSU policy and strategies
regarding working time.
It is also particularly pertinent given that the Government’s changes to industrial laws have
the potential to dismantle many of the safety net conditions around hours of work, such as
overtime and penalty rates, mutual rostering arrangements and rest breaks to name a few.
I would like to thank all those members who took the time to fill out the survey during their
busy days.




Paul Schroder
National Secretary



 Highlights
        98% believed it was important for hours of work and any related benefits to be
        protected in enterprise awards and agreements (85% strongly agree and 13% agree).
        33% did not believe they could reasonably expect to achieve their targets during
        ordinary working hours.
        48% consistently worked hours that they were not compensated for.
        81% were concerned that the Government’s proposed Industrial Relations changes
        would undermine their existing hours of work arrangements (54% very concerned and
        27% concerned).
        38% of people were not sure if they had any say in changes to their work hours.
        43% felt that more staff would help to improve their work/life balance, 23% believed
        that more control over when they could take time off would improve their work/life
        balance and 18% felt that more control over their hours would help their work/life
        balance.
            Hours and hours of work…

Background
In late 2005 all FSU members were sent a survey to gather information about hours of work
and work/life balance in the finance sector industry.
Over 7,000 returns were received. The main findings from the survey are set out below.



Demographics
          73% of respondents were female (5,030);
          One third of respondents were aged 35-44 years;
          One third were aged 45-54 years;
         The remaining third was aged 25-34 years (17%), 55+ years (12%) and
         15-24 years (3%);
         The majority of respondents were from NSW (34%), Victoria (25%) and
         Queensland (16%);
          The remaining respondents were from WA (10%), SA (8%), and Tasmania (3%).
          Very small returns were received from NT and ACT.


Employers
          NAB was the largest single identifiable employer with 1,422 returns (20%);
          Westpac had 1,222 returns (17%) and CBA had 1,076 returns (15%);
          ANZ had 907 returns (13%), St George had 494 returns (7%) while IAG and
          Bankwest received around 300 returns each (4%).


Work context
          62% of respondents worked full-time;
          92% did normal business hours with the remainder doing shift work;
          39% were contracted to work 30-39 hours per week, 23% for 40-44 hours;
          31% were contracted to work 29 hours or less, 6% for 45+ hours per week;
          98% were permanent employees (casuals 1%, contract 1%);
         53% worked in a retail branch environment, 21% worked in head office or
         administration centres and 10% worked in call centre environments;
         47% were customer service/sales officers, 16% were managers, 14% were clerical
         officers and 13% were specialists;
          61% had salaries of approximately $20,000 to $40,000 while 9% had salaries of
          $80,000 or more;



         Authorised by FSU National Secretary Paul Schroder                            2
         Hours and hours of work…
Main findings/results
      38% of people were not sure if they had any say in changes to their work hours;
      75% were satisfied with the hours they worked;
      20% would prefer to work less hours, 5% would prefer more hours;
      21% of people had been forced to change hours against their preference.

    Weekends
      The vast majority felt working on Saturdays or Sundays should be voluntary
      (92% and 93%);
      Respondents believed that Saturday work should be paid at time and a half (50%) or
      double time (30%);
      74% of respondents believed that Sunday work should be paid at double time, while
      15% thought it should be paid at time and a half.

    The Working Day
      Respondents generally seemed to believe the normal working day should not start
      before 8am or finishing after 6pm;
      44% felt employers should not be able to direct employees to start before 8am, while
      39% felt it should not be before 9am;
      61% felt employers should not be able to direct employees to work beyond 5pm,
      while 23% felt it should not be after 6pm.

    Fairness
      48% consistently worked hours that they were not compensated for.
      98% believed that changes to their working hours should only occur by mutual
      agreement between them and their manager (83% strongly agree and 15% agree);
      61% felt the process for rostering hours in their workplace was fair, while 15% felt it
      was unfair (24% were unsure);
      33% did not believe they could reasonably expect to achieve their targets during
      ordinary working hours;

    Balancing
      94% believed that employers have an important role to play in helping employees
      balance work and family responsibilities (55% strongly agree and 39% agree);
      27% of respondents agreed that their personal life was suffering due to the hours
      they worked;
      43% felt that more staff would help to improve their work/life balance, 23% believed
      that more control over when they could take time off would improve their work/life
      balance and 18% felt that more control over their hours would help their work/life
      balance.




      Authorised by FSU National Secretary Paul Schroder                              3
            Hours and hours of work…
      IR changes
          98% believed it was important for hours of work and any related benefits to be
          protected in enterprise awards and agreements (85% strongly agree and
          13% agree);
          81% were concerned that the Government’s proposed Industrial Relations changes
          would undermine their existing hours of work arrangements (54% very concerned
          and 27% concerned).


Contrasts/differences
Compared to the Total sample, people working in Head Office/Administrative Centres were
characterised by the following:
          more likely to be male (42% compared to 27%);
          primarily full-time workers (85% versus 62%);
          more likely to prefer to work fewer hours (25% compared to 20%).

Compared to the Total sample, people working in a Retail branch environment were
characterised by the following:
          more likely to be female (85% compared to 73%);
          mainly part-time (56% compared to 38%);
          inclined to nominate ‘more staff’ as the option most likely to improve their work/life
          balance (49% versus 43%)

Compared to the Total sample, people working in a Call Centre environment were
characterised by the following:
          more likely to be aged 25-34 years (26% compared to 17%);
          far more likely to work varying shifts (33% versus 5%);
          more likely to have been required to change their hours against their preference
          (34% compared to 21%);
          did not feel the process for rostering hours was fair for employees
          (33% versus 16%);
          would like more control over their work hours to improve their work/life balance (32%
          compared to 18%) and would like more control over when they could take time off
          (31% versus 23%).

Compared to the Total sample Males were characterised by the following:
          more likely to prefer to work fewer hours (31% compared to 20%).
          personal lives more likely to be suffering because of the hours they worked
          (37% compared to 27%);
          consistently worked extra hours that they were not compensated for
          (58% versus 48%).




         Authorised by FSU National Secretary Paul Schroder                                4

				
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