Research: Working more than 40 hours cripples productivity

CINCINNATI - Putting in long hours at the office may not be paying off the way you think.

Every hour employees work in addition to a 40-hour work week is making them less effective and productive over both the short- and the long-haul, according to data on Salon.com .

Many U.S. workers are clocking more than 40 hours a week. More than 24 percent of people who are employed full time work 41 hours or more, according to 2010 U.S. Census data . More than 6 percent of full-time employees work more than 60 hours.

Studies show employees have eight good, reliable hours of work in them each day. On average, you get no more work out of a 10-hour day than you do out of an eight-hour day.

By the eighth hour of the day, people's best work is usually already behind them. In the ninth hour of work, fatigue sets in and workers deliver a fraction of their usual capacity. The same is true for the 10th and 11th hours, according to the data.

Occasional overtime may not be a bad idea; however, it still doesn't mean employers are getting the best bang for their buck.

"Increasing a team's hours in the office by 50 percent (from 40 to 60 hours) does not result in 50 percent more output," wrote Sara Robinson on Salon.com. "In fact, the numbers may typically be something closer to 25-30 percent more work in 50 percent more time."

To read the full Salon.com article, go to http://www.salon.com/2012/03/14/bring_back_the_40_hour_work_week/?partner=yahoo-smb.

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