6342.0 - Working Time Arrangements, Australia, Nov 2006  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/05/2007   
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May 29, 2007
Embargoed 11.30 am (AEST)
Many employees are working extra hours

Over a third (37%) of the 8 million employees (excluding owner managers of incorporated enterprises) in November 2006 usually worked extra hours or overtime in their main job, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Of the 2.9 million employees who worked extra hours or overtime, 43% usually worked paid extra hours only, 48% usually worked unpaid extra hours only and 9% usually worked both paid and unpaid extra hours.

There were 1.4 million (17%) employees who usually work shift work. Approximately one in five (21%) employees aged 15-19 years reported they usually work shift work, and 20% of those aged 20-24 years. A slightly higher proportion of men work shift work (18%) than women (16%).

Other findings from the Working Time Arrangements, Australia survey include:
  • 60% of the 8 million employees 'did not have any say in their start and finish times'
  • 72% could choose when their holidays were taken
  • 38% were able to work extra hours in order to take time off
  • 23% had earnings which varied from one pay period to the next
  • 36% had hours that varied weekly or they were usually required to be on call or standby.

The Working Time Arrangements Survey also collected some information on the employment characteristics and working patterns of all 8.6 million employees (including owner managers of incorporated enterprises). Almost all (8.1 million) of these employees held only one job, and nearly half a million (493,900) held more than one job. One in five multiple jobholders worked 7 days a week, compared with 4% of single jobholders. The majority (56%) of multiple jobholders usually worked some hours between 7.00pm and 7.00am compared with 28% of single jobholders.

Media note:
Owner managers of incorporated enterprises are legally defined as employees but some of their employment characteristics and working arrangements differ from other employees. Some information is not collected from owner managers of incorporated enterprises for this reason.

Further information can be found in Working Time Arrangements, Australia, November 2006 (cat. no. 6342.0).