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Do we work too much in the US?

By AV . ·

After reading this article and looking at the chart, I started thinking about the quality of life for US workers. The chart is based on 10 years of tenure. Most US workers don't stay at a job that long so they have alot less time off.

I was surprised to learn that there are no federal laws in the US mandating that companies pay employees for time off or that they grant them a minimum amount of vacation days unpaid.

I can't remember any company I ever worked for saying "take 2 weeks off" like they do in Europe. I'm lucky if I can get 1 week of peace in the IT field. As it is, I have to check emails. What kind of time off is that? In my 20+ years in IT I have never taken 2 weeks off at once. How sad is that?

Do you think all of this work has paid off for you? Is it worth it? PS - O, Canada! You're worse than the US.


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? Well...

by dawgit In reply to Well..

That one went south <i>Quick</i> now didn't it? :0 -d

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That exposes a different problem.

by TonytheTiger In reply to But that would penalise j ...

A lot of people think society should try to make everyone absolutely equal in every way. These people probably use a spreadsheet during the holiday shopping season to make sure all the kids get the exact same amount spent on them.

It would be like if a grocer had peanuts on sale, he would have to offer an alternative item on sale for people who are allergic to

Something else I notice. Many people are almost insanely jealous of what someone else has or gets. They don't realize that the time they spend brooding and bitching about it is better spent getting out and getting their own! If a friend of theirs hit the lottery, they'd grumble "Lucky *******!" under their breath while holding their hand out.

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Conspicuously absent from the list: China

by TechExec2 In reply to Do we work too much in th ...

I noticed that China is conspicuously absent from the list. Not sure what that means.

Also: What's up with Philippines and Thailand (5 and 6 days respectively after 10 years tenure)?

My experience and observations match yours when it comes to how IT worker "vacations" are "taken" in the USA. The problem is pervasive. But, I think this is true for any key person in a USA company. Key executives. Key managers. Key staff. Truly key people in American companies are always tethered to the office in some way during "vacations". How do you escape? Get good people to delegate to and also task them with protecting your vacation. :^0

On the bright side: The more they attempt to abuse your vacation time, the more job security you have achieved! ;-)

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China absent

by Dr Dij In reply to Conspicuously absent from ...

many chinese and other developing countries certain worker categories work 6 days a week (and even 7 for some factory jobs). Since the vacation / holiday figures don't include weekend days lost for 6 (or 7) day weeks (52 * 2 = 104 days) they could be misleading.

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That is odd about China

by AV . In reply to Conspicuously absent from ...

I'm not surprised though. I think the Chinese are treated like automatons. The same goes for the Philippines and Thailand looking at those numbers. Its no wonder why American companies want to outsource our jobs there.

When I was a one-woman operation, I finally convinced the company I work for to have a consultant to fill in for me when I went on vacation. Before that, I used to check in or try to handle the problem from wherever I was. Everytime I used to go away, something would f*ck up and I'd have to deal with it from afar when I was on vacation. A smaller company doesn't have any staff. Its a ball and chain existance.

Yes. I have job security, but what about quality of life? I've thought alot about that lately after spending 20 years in IT.


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Oh Canada

by Shellbot In reply to Do we work too much in th ...

Well, everytime someone asks me would i not move to back to canada i say "**** no"
Very few vacation days..and just plain poor protection for workers. Now yes, some palces aren't so bad..but others are and they don't care, because when you leave there are 10 more people fighting for your job..

20 days is the legal min for paid vacation days in Ireland. a lot of IT workers would actually get more..its up to the company. My hubby gets 25 days I think. I get 28,(plus public holidays) but 3 of them I have to take when the company wants me to, usually 2 days at Xmas and Good Friday.

In my place you are encouraged to take 1 full week in the spring, 2 weeks in the summer, 1 in the winter and then your remaining days here and there as one offs as you need.

As for oncall and overtime..I don't know a whole lot of people who do much of that. Oh yes there are some places..I know Intel let staff work a lot of overtime, but only if they want to..

After reading that article, I'm considering brushing up on my french and going to france..30

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It sounds like you have a good thing going in Ireland

by AV . In reply to Oh Canada

That kind of time is unheard of in the states. But Oh Canada! Thats absolutely pitiful. Didn't know you lived there at one time. I always thought they had it better than the states.

I work overtime on a regular basis but don't get paid for it because I'm "salaried". I have to constantly fight to keep the overtime under control, but I do. My hubby, also an IT guy, is sometimes on call 24 hours a day. Its like one week a month. He gets paid, but who wants to handle an IT call at 2am when you should be sleeping.

I've worked at my job for about 14 years. I have 20 vacation days now and 8 holidays. I'm doing pretty good as far as American jobs go, but I can't ever leave because I'll have to start over. If I have to do that, France is looking pretty good to me too.


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closet canadian :)

by Shellbot In reply to It sounds like you have a ...

I'm a hoser eh..
Moved to Ireland aout 8 years ago. Put it this Canada i worked at Tim Hortons and Superstore, was the best jobs i could get witout all sorts of qualifications..moved to Ireland..took an Access course and the rest is history.

They have a lot of "worker protection" over here. Most of it thanks to the EU. In most places over here, if you work overtime, you get paid for it (even if you are on salary)OR time off in liue.
In my place we have to kepe strict time of our hours..and if we are owed any time, we have to try and take it as soon as possible. For example, stayed a few mins late last week, and had a short lunch one day..i now have 50 mins to take on Friday. Sweet huh?
Its the only reason i'm still in my place..hate it, but conditions are pretty good...

Wow, I can't imagine having to lose all my vacation time to change jobs..thats not nice!

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Vacation days and paid leave

by rob mekel In reply to Oh Canada

Well I think it's not that bad in the Netherlands :)

Minimum of 20 vacation days
36 hour working week
sick day's paid by law 70% (excluded first 2 but they are paid by the company and 30% added to the 70%) max 1 year.
10 day's paid the rest unpaid leave if wanna take care of sick child or direct family
Extra working hours can be refunded in free time. Meaning 13 days extra leave if working 40 hours a week.
1 day extra if over 45
1 day extra if over 50
1 day extra if over 55
early retirement at 60 (70-80%)
2 christmas day's if not in the weekend
1 newyears day if not in the weekend
1 day leave on goodfriday
2nd easter day leave
1 Queens day if not on saturday (if queens day is on sunday we get monday free)
5 May free --- liberty day
1 day free at Ascensionday
2nd Whitsunday (actualy it's monday)

The max for me ... (not sickday's nor taking care ... had zipp of them the last 15 years)
36 vacation day's free to spend through out the year
9 Christian or otherwise dedicated days

Not bad I think.


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It would be interesting to see

by jdclyde In reply to Do we work too much in th ...

if in these other countries there is as much costs per employee in employer contributions? Because there is a high cost for each full time employee, many employers try to get by with less of them.

Between unemployment, taxes, benefits, what you see in your pay check is usually only half of your cost to your employer.

I have never taken more than a week off at one time.

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