The late debate
A recent survey has shown that most bosses don’t mind when employees show up late to work. Peter Horgan spoke with the Small Firms Associations to see if that really is true
The survey, conducted by online service provider Mozy, found that Irish employers are the second most lenient compared to their British, French and American counterparts.
The research found that 73 per cent of bosses have a relaxed attitude to staff turning up late for work compared to just over half of employees surveyed who believe their employer would have a problem.
Irish employers were found to be the second most lenient with 63 per cent allowing lateness. Thirty per cent of Irish bosses who accept lateness will take 15 minutes, while 25 per cent will accept up to 30 minutes. The bad news for workers however is that most Irish bosses will not accept anything over an hour.
“It is incredibly important depending on what sector you work in,” says Patricia Callan, Director of the Small Firms Association.
“If the sector is dependent on a roster system then lateness can’t be tolerated as you are depending on people to cover other people clocking off. These would include retail, hospitality and manufacturing.”
However, Patricia conceded that sectors such as sales and marketing would have a degree of flexibility to them, especially those of a smaller size.
"It’s about give and take really. If a person needs a few hours for something like the doctor then employers can be quite flexible. Given the current climate of mobile technology, many office workers do their days work without even stepping into an office.”
The report also touched upon trends in online working, with many employers allowing a range of personal business to be conducted on office time, including internet banking and looking up holidays online.
“We would advise members to have certain policies in place in respect of the internet privileges afforded to employees,” says Patricia.
“Employers have to be aware that there is potential for offensive material to be downloaded and that workers need to understand internet access is a privilege that can’t be abused.
The researchers who conducted the study commented on how easy going the Irish workplace appears to be, especially when compared to their British counterparts.
“I was surprised while employees in Ireland make themselves available they do tend to take it easy at the same time,” says Claire Galbois-Alcaix, the conductor of the study for Mozy.
“While some employees in Britain and elsewhere may click into their emails at 6.30am, the majority in Ireland tend to wait until 8am or even 8.30am. Employer also seemed happy to let their workers leave a bit early at the end of the day to go to the pub, which is something I found to be quite great!”
Interestingly, despite the leniency of Irish bosses towards lateness, the end of the working day appears to have lengthened significantly. Not being in the office is no longer a barrier to being contacted with mobile work devices and numbers readily available to each employer, with most days stretching over 12 hours.
Over half of Irish employers surveyed admitted they would have no problem making a call to a employee on a work related item up until 9pm.
Things could be worse however, with British counterparts prepared in some instances to go as late as midnight before refusing to call.
To see more of the survey visit www.mozy.ie/9-5.