Working a 40 Hour Week

Thanks everyone for taking the time to respond. I have some things to consider and your comments have been helpful

closed Comments

  • +8

    The 9-5.30 could have been with a half hour lunch break.

    • Normally it is 9 to 5 (total 8 hours minus break 30 mins). So it is 7.5, but somehow it translates to 7.6 hours per day x 5= 38 hours week.

      • -5

        It's 7.36 x 5 = 38

        • +2

          nope. 7.6 = 7 hours 36 mins

        • +1

          @tightass do you even math, bro?

          • @rave75: No, MathNerd is the guy who maths.

  • +55

    I know it's not easy, but I suggest you try and take a long term view of your career. If this job is a good platform for helping you achieve your goals I would personally suck it up. If its the culture of the place, your comments are not going to create any self reflection in the company and it could see your earmarked in a negative way.

    If its not a good platform, then probably go and find a better option anyway.

    Good luck.

    • +8

      This. Your comments will make your employer just consider someone else. Dont let the time you're spending at work bring you down. You focus on building a career starts with your commitment. By drawing attention to your work hours and the amount you are getting paid, you're showing your boss, employer and everyone around you, including yourself, that you only care about the money.

      It's much healthier if you personally show that you care more about becoming a professional and irreplaceable in your position.

      Think like your boss to become the boss.

      I regret going down that path 10 years ago and complaining about the unpaid hours in a profession.

      • +1

        Agreed. Generally, its a good work ethic to finish what you are meant to even if it requires you to spend extra time. I've just spent past 2 weeks working till 8pm and worked on Sunday too. Last year I was working till 9 pm for a few weeks straight. Definitely bothers me after a while but if you can make sure you get to improve your skills as you work, then you can look at this extra time as an investment in your skills rather than as an investment in your employer's interests for free. At least then you won't feel robbed by your employer.

        If you are staying back late and using out dated technologies that have no value in the current market then that's a real waste of time and you should consider moving or complaining. If your employer doesn't allow you to use new and efficient technologies and wants you to grind your butt trying to make the old technology work by all means get out at 5:30.

        I've noticed way too many people in the Sydney IT field fall behind on their skills where they've been with the company for 5+ years and stayed back late to get work done but after all those years they don't have the skills needed to find a new opportunity. The rest of the world has moved far ahead in that time. This also makes you resistant to change and it becomes even harder to learn new skills.

        Spend extra hours at work but make sure your employer doesn't rob you of career growth whatever it may be - promotions or new skills.

        • How much were you getting paid to work til 9pm and work Sundays?

        • I’ve seen this as the main problem actually. Nonsense new tech for the sake of it. Angular js that has to be re written because someone wanted to keep their skills up to date. But each to their own ;-)

    • +7

      That's what Harvey Weinstein used to say. I suppose better workplace conditions are someone's else's responsibility ?

      • +1

        Ultimately, if you don't want to do it, there's always someone else ready and willing to do so. We do lots and lots of unpaid overtime at work. If we don't or fail to deliver, there's plenty others waiting to take over. It's a tough world sometimes.

  • +21

    If you are employed as a full timer on an hourly rate, you need to be paid for every hour worked.
    If you are employed as a full timer on a salary, the business likely considers the extra 2 hours to be reasonable overtime, and will expect you to fulfill it every week without any additional remuneration. You'll have a tough time fighting against this one when a precedence has been set and all staff accept this currently.

    • +14

      Most industries view "reasonable additional hours" as doing an extra 2 hours each month.
      However, companies push to have this as 40 hours every week.
      And if they have a team of 20 staff, each doing 40+ hours a week, instead of a standard 38 hours, this means they can cut back on the number of staff from say 25 people. Which means the salary of 5 people, or around $300,000 is not given to the workers that are filling in the work, but is being pocketed by the managers and other divisions. It's even worse when the staff are paid low wages, or under the industry rates.

      Nobody wants to be a martyr, so everyone will shut up and do an extra 2-3 hours of work a week.
      Forget about those fantastic people, you have to care for yourself, so you either need to get better conditions for yourself, or accept a promotion, or dig your heels and put up with the job to further your career.

    • Yeah OP, lowlife's got a good point, what are you paid by? An hourly wage or a salary? It would have to be an hourly wage because, supposedly I was told only managers and higher ranking positions are on salaries and you're not a manager or any other equivalent or higher ranking positions…..therefore, go chase them up and get paid for your 30 minutes overtime each day!

  • +3

    This topic actually opens up a can of worms.

    My question is should I take this any further then I already have in mentioning it?

    Short answer is: No, if you would like you keep your job or would eventually like a promotion.

    I'm not here to argue whether it is right or wrong, but there is the general expectation that you do what you need to do to get your job done. Your employment contract may have specific hours on it, but it doesn't mean you should get up and leave right at the specified "finish" time. Doing so without taking care of your responsibilities could be a career-limiting move.

    Personally, I can easily do an extra 10-20 hours each week and not get paid for it. I'm not always a fan of it, but it balances out sometimes because my company is also flexible in letting me do whatever I want when it's not busy. I can take days off without question.

    So I look at it as a bit of give and take.

    • +1

      What industry do you work in? My guess is it's not one of the old professions like accountancy, medicine or law.

      • +3

        What industry do you work in? My guess is it's not one of the old professions like accountancy, medicine or law.

        I work in financial services - the whole "required to work reasonable additional hours" seems to be a pretty standard clause in the employment contracts for corporate office jobs, including lawyers and accounting.

        Except, the number of "reasonable additional hours" generally increases as the roles get more senior.

      • lol

        Ask any law graduate how many paid hours they do a week. It's definitely not 38.

        • +2

          Oh, they do 38 paid hours and many more unpaid hours. It's the modern version of a workhouse

  • +5

    it also says I'll be required to work reasonable additional hours when needed to fulfil my duties.

    I'm pretty sure every employment contract I've signed has a similar clause to it. Graduates in Big 4 accounting firms can easily do 80 hour work weeks during busy seasons (including coming into the office on the weekends). Consider yourself lucky!

  • +4

    You are new to the workplace. It's not like school or uni. Your options…

    a) keep working the hours that everyone else is working and keep your job (hours are as per the contract you signed). By the way, hours worked from 9-5.30 are the same as from 9.30-6 (which is what you say in the original post).
    b) raise a stink and you'll be finding another job pretty quickly (and you'll have to explain why you were sacked from your current job)

  • +4

    Get HR to define what "reasonable extra hours" are. My definition is staying back 10-15 minutes to stay organised so you can start fresh the next day not leaving at 5:30/6:00 on the dot.

    If they want to add an extra half an hour to each day make sure you are maximising your toilet breaks and sick leave wherever possible.

    • +2

      If they want to add an extra half an hour to each day make sure you are maximising your toilet breaks and sick leave wherever possible.

      Unless your role is part of a functional team where everyone's doing the same thing from a pool of tasks, performance will often be measured on work output rather than time itself. So "maximising" toilet breaks and sick leave isn't a good idea since you'll just be delaying the inevitable. You'll end up having to stay back even later to complete the actual work assigned to you. It's better to try and learn to work more efficiently and get your work completed sooner.

  • This is the norm. Find out when overtime applies, but thats all you can do. You will find that accounting roles vary, for some end of month operations you may be staying back very late.

  • +10

    9.30am till 6pm is 8.5 hours of time.

    Lunch breaks are NOT PAID TIME, so you are working the correct hours if taking 1 hour lunch, you're only working 7.5 hours a day.

    7.5 hrs x 5 days = 37.5 hours (so you really owe them 30 mins each week somewhere else if being paid for 38 hours).

    9am till 5.30pm, is 8.5 hours…….

    You do realise you're working the same amount of hours, just shifted by 30mins to start later?

    You are working 38 hours or less once your unpaid lunch break is taken out. Welcome to 'life'.

    Take what further? You only work 37.5 hours instead of 38 hours…. not wise my friend

    Not works fault and has nothing to do with them.

    Ok, welcome to full time work and being fresh out of uni on a $40k year job.

    What extra 2 hours a week? I'm only seeing 7.5 hours a day being worked, not 8 hours.

    (Mod: By OP's request, text quoting OP's personal circumstances has been removed)

    • Sorry typo, 9-6

    • If Math's isn't OP's strong point, maybe they should be doing something other than Accounting.. :O

      Edit: Oh, I see OP just edited. ;)

      If attention to detail isn't OP's strong point, maybe they should be doing something other than Accounting.. :O

      when I asked why we don't finish at 6

      Please revise.

      OP: Do you have Friday night drinks or some other social event? My last employment finished at 4pm for drinks.

      Read your contract regarding reasonable overtime. It's a little loop hole, and they'll be taking advantage of it. Suck it up, gain your work experience and move on. Be aware that we notice clock watchers.

      • +2

        This^^, the detail in this post is very confusing.

        The situation is real life, and the commute is OP's problem not the employer's.

        Having said that, if OP is not happy they should move over for someone else who is keen.

        • Never said it was their problem. Just weighing up the pros and cons of the job in relation to this issue

          • @profounddominator: I think the crux of your problem is that your are swapping your time for money i.e. a job. There are hundreds of millions of people who want to just show up and be paid for their time. If that's you then suck it up until you get your CA and bail however it doesn't get any easier from my observation. Also add in the fact that there are thousands of foreign students who want the experience to get PR and are willing to work for free which doesn't add up to much leverage for you. You chose a saturated industry which has put you in a position of weakness.

      • No we don't. Same hours Monday to Friday. Thanks for replying

  • +1

    As others said, you need to look a it from career perspective. You are working in a profession, not at Macdonalds. You may need to do a bit above and beyond if you want to get ahead. MY first job I did long hours and was on call 24x7 and didn't get paid any overtime. But I learned a lot, progressed quickly and like to think I reaped the rewards in the long term

  • Do you want to take an hour for lunch? Can't you work the hours specified in your contract or will that brand you an accountancy radical?

    • Not many places to eat around my work so I don't mind the hour break

      • if you are happy with the 1hr, then it's more of a conversation about give and take.

  • +2

    $19.20 and you spent 3 years at Uni.

    Are Commerce jobs on 457 Visas?

    • +4

      I earn almost exactly that per hour and spent 7 years at uni plus a grad dip. Degrees set most people up for a life of enslaved misery.

      • pretty sure minimum wage when i worked retail was more than this…

        • +1

          Maybe you were on a casual rate though?

      • Degrees set most people up for a life of enslaved misery.

        That's not the degrees doing that, it's the person's choice.

        You must have had some idea whether or not there were jobs for the degrees you chose and what sort of salary they earned, or did you just expect it?

      • Uh, what? That's not even close to true. The average income for a person with a degree is higher than for a person without. See the ABS.

        I don't know what your degree and grad dip are but you clearly did not pick a winner.

        And I'm not saying this as a STEM nerd, I have a social science background and can easily make bank, far easier than someone with no degree.

        • The ABS doesn't take into account the fact that many more tradies than professionals run a business and can consequently and significantly reduce their taxable income and all the undeclared cash payments that tradies receive throughour the year.

  • +6

    Lol welcome to professional services. It is normal if unfair - if you want to get paid for actual hours worked you are in the wrong profession or go to industry.

    I wish I had a 40 hour week (work at one of the big 4) - during busy periods can be pushing 90-100 hour weeks. No overtime/time in lieu.

    • 8am to 10pm the entire 7 day week?!
      With no time in lieu that's like a 50% pay cut :(

      • More like 6 days a week and working well past midnight most nights and right back into it at normal time in the morning.

    • Thanks for increasing my super balance.

  • 9 to 6pm with 1 hr lunch is 8 hrs paid work, which is correct.

    You should be asking for your ADOs, 1 ADO every 4 weeks. They should accrue if not being used (sometimes to a maximum of 3 saved). Be careful if they accrue too much the excess will not accrue anymore and be gone with the wind, employee charity. At the very least ask them to cash it out if they do not want you to take it. Some awards and contracts allow up to 3 ADOs saved.

    Having a minimum wage job after uni sucks but think of it as improving prospects for the future. This is no reason though for the employer to shaft you on what is your job entitlement.

    • I haven't seen an ADO / RDO in most professional businesses for years (apart from health and related).

      OP's 'job entitlement' would have been outlined in their employment contract, which OP obviously agreed to.

  • +12

    Most (not all) employment is an arrangement where your employer is interested primarily in extracting your value. You may be getting benefits out of it - like money, experience, etc. - but don't for a second think that you are being done a favour: the moment your value diminishes you will be scrutinised and out the door once it drops below a level they deem replacing you to their economic advantage.

    I suggest you approach your position similarly: try to extract the value you need, balancing it against your need to stay there and not piss off the employer. Find the ways you can do that. Perhaps it's time to leave when that is no longer tenable.

    These days many many employers feel entitled to ask their employees to work for nothing beyond their formally agreed to hours, or expect such flexibility that real hourly pay is diluted to much less than what it is presented as. This is accepted by so much of society as the comments above demonstrate - it shows just how much we've been duped.

  • +10

    Welcome to the real world :)

  • +21

    Almost all the commenters are saying they have shit conditions where they do unpaid work but they cannot do anything about it because they feel threatened by their employer.

    Amazingly almost every single young person is told to take this path of misery so that they can buy stuff so people will like them.

    • +8

      It's a bit of a joke. I feel like a weirdo for only buying things in cash (apart from house), buying a house I can actually afford, and working as little as I'm allowed, zero overtime. Start at 7:30, finish dead on 4:00, Monday to Friday. Time is valuable.

      The number of people here who are happy to work for free is astonishing, anything outside your normal hours should be payed overtime. You realise that the time you are working for free is just making your employers richer, and you poorer?

    • This. Just try to be proactive and finish most things within that 40 hours.

  • +6

    You know all the research shows- you know, evidence- that long hours are unproductive.

    • +1

      Sorry but i don't really believe this is true. I think there is an echo chamber of people who are upset about working for free so they repeat this fact. Maybe in some industries this may be true but I doubt it is for most.

      • Nah it’s true. Working hours have been decreasing due to improved technology such as emails and improved efficiency.

      • +1

        It's true for anything beyond assembling widgets or pushing paper around; productivity drops off significantly with long hours, especially over consecutive days / weeks. With my profession - software architecture / development - you can even go backwards if you push yourself too hard over too long a period. The number of days I'd wished I'd stopped when I was ahead rather than work an hour or two longer and then stuffed everything up!

  • +4

    In my first job we all (team of 6) worked long hours - normally 8.00-17.30 (later if we had a problem) with 30m lunch plus Saturday morning compulsory overtime 8-12 which usually meant 14.00. The whole team did those hours and we did each others jobs and the manager made sure we achieved our bonus, so we sucked it up. As I was a fairly inexperienced tradie I figured the extra hours made up for inexperience. There was also a recession / credit squeeze happening so I considered myself lucky to have a job and I stayed there 5 years.

    For the first 15 years most of my weeks were 40-60hrs not including breaks at all the places I worked. Eventually you reap the financial rewards.

    When I was in IT 12-15 hour days were the norm and that broke me as I was mid-40s, 2 kids, shared care. After that I had a motto of "If you can't complete the work in the 7.5hrs allotted then find a new job.

    I think you are getting off fairly lightly as a new starter. Make the most of the learning experience while you are young, fit and physically resilient. Either move closer to the office or find a job closer to home. It's the commute that will grind you down, not the extra hours in the office.

    Just try and fit in. The only waves you should be making are the waves of success.

    • +1

      "…and the manager made sure we achieved our bonus…"
      That is a totally different ball game.

      • Yep. We were very focused and directed. Never again have my KPIs been so clearly explained to me.

        The whole store had been sacked or transferred the year before due to various minor embezzlement and customer service issues that added up to a $50k loss and not many customers.
        The oldest guy in our team was 26. The manager was 24. In 2 years we turned the place into a $80k profit centre which was pretty good at the time. We also got busy enough that we took on a management trainee, an apprentice and another tradie.

  • +2

    In the finance/accounting/Business industry working an addition of 1 or 2 hours a day is pretty standard (private sector) - I think it is pretty unfair but most industries that pay over the 100k mark will having you working like a dog at the start.

    My wife worked for KPMG for 10 years and she said that she was doing at least 10 hours of unpaid work a week if not 15 and she was on what i would call a basic salary…

    I also know a few lawyers who are on 120-200k p/a but in reality they work 70-80 hours a week and are pretty much expected to give up their weekends at the drop of a hat for clients…

  • I don't understand what the problem is as you are doing the exact same hours. Maybe just contractually the hours mentioned is a little different with "work contract that I signed it says that my work hours are 9-5:30" vs "Everyone in the office actually works 9:30-6"

    You are not doing anything extra hours. Why don't you speak with HR and ask if you come in at 9 (rather than 9:30 like everyone else) then can you leave at 5:30 (instead of 6). Seems a reasonable request given hours are the same and most flexible workplaces allow for this.

  • +1

    One other thing i think the Unions have lot a lot of power in the past 10-15 years. Big business has sunk a load of cash into lobbying the government and screwing workers.

    The recent changes to weekend penalties springs to mind - i dont necessarily blame the unions they are only as strong as their members but when you have people like this b*tch involved it ruins it for workers:

    I think the system needs to change a mandatory annual pay rise to CPI should be instilled into all business on top of whatever pay rise can be negotiated - it is fact big businesses are making more money but wage growth is flat

    I also super should be sitting at 12% which would help ease the social welfare burden of an aging population

    In addition restriction on co-contribution should be lifted for anyone earning under 200k a year on super - the whole point of the system is to allow people to set themselves up for retirement but the only people that get looked after are MPs with there high remuneration pension everyone else gets screwed

    • Yep. OP needs a union. This shit doesn't happen if you're unionised.

  • What's your job?

    If you're salaried, you're expected to perform an amount of work commensurate with your pay. This means performing work that an average worker would take 38 hours per week to do.

    If you're slow at your work, you will take more than 38 hours to finish that work. You can choose to stay back and put in extra hours, or be seen as under performing. If you are seen as under performing, you may be disciplined or dismissed when the business suits it. You definitely won't get a recommendation that you can use after this job.

    If you're a top performer, you will finish that work in less than 38 hours. You can spend your extra time twiddling your thumbs or outperform yourself. You may end up getting a promotion, or a recommendation when you are ready to leave.

  • +1

    Yerrr my husband works 50+ hours on a 38 hour p/w salary. Their excuse is that 'its the time you should finish your work and if you don't then thats your problem' yet his work is ongoing and not set duties so yup, retail sucks.

    • +1

      his work is ongoing and not set duties so yup, retail sucks.

      I'm not doubting what you're saying, but if there's no set duties, how does he know what he needs to do? Is he actually working in retail or does he work in the head office of a retail store?

      Or is the "extra hours" just his excuse for coming back late? haha jks! =)

      • He's a produce manager so the store is 'running' basically 24 hours, from normal opening shop to deliveries + nightfill at night. Everyone calls him because they rather deal with him even though its his day off/hes home and I can hear him say 'CaLl ThE ShOp' Hes actually in the shop on the floor, back etc. So there are just never ending things that comes up, plus workers there are not super motivated and very good at their jobs either, so when the shop doesnt look good it 'reflects on him'.

        • Your husband needs to get a new phone number and not answer when he's not in the office unless he's being paid to be on call.

          That's pretty disgusting.

    • +1

      Sounds like hubby needs to find another job. That sort of business attitude absolutely stinks. Businesses give vague work instructions then exploit the workers for what they can, then the kicker is, they blame the worker for not being efficient enough. So many stories of dodgy underpayments.

      • The wage is slightly above average for his sector (but pretty low), but yes it is starting to get to him. He is starting to leave pretty close to his rostered end time.
        Actually I remembered before, we got into a whole argument that his rostered hours was 1 hour more daily then every other manager, yet everyone receives the same pay. I told him to F that and either go get it changed to be equal, or get a payrise (he got it lowered, but still stays back anyway ugh)

        Can't leave for now as I am due to give birth in July. But I might have to go back to work asap (I earn more) and he can quit and be a house husband or go do some course and then FIFO :(

        • +1

          All the best for the birth. In regard to house husband, do your maternity leave and then, if you earn more, go for it. It seems to work for the NZ Prime Minister.

          • @try2bhelpful: Thank you :) I am a contractor so no work maternity leave unfortunately, but get the govt one. Finally, all my years of paying taxes and get something back!

            • +2

              @MeesusEff: The catch is breast feeding but you will, hopefully, be pretty clear after that. Probably a good idea to keep in touch with your network, if you aren’t too exhausted, to keep the work flowing when you get back into it. I offer my thanks for raising the next generation of tax payers and nursing home attendants.

  • -1

    I have no idea what you make as a graduate accountant but most people who earn fair to good money (call it over $75k for argument sake) work more than 40 hours a week.

    About the only salary jobs that work 38 hour week are government jobs.

    • -1

      Um… no… I earn over 75k and I don’t work for the government. Maybe finish your work in time and don’t take hour long lunches.

      • +1

        About the only salary jobs that work 38 hour week are government jobs.

        I didn't say all I just about, there is jobs outside of the government where you make are on a salary over $75k and only work 38 hour week, but most (ie over 50%) of them are with the government.

  • OP: Take 30 minute lunch breaks to the letter. Get all your work done. You can walk out the door at 5:30 guilt free.

    Otherwise do what the rest of them do, 60+ minute lunch breaks, work at an easy pace, all for the measly cost of 30 extra minutes a day.

    This is the problem with a lot of businesses, no incentive for hard work for the hours you are paid for.

  • +1

    i often work eXtra hours in my job. i think of my job as "a holiday from poverty"

  • -1

    When you start climbing up the endless ladder (to nowhere) you will soon realise you are putting way too many hours than 38/40. For fixed salary jobs this doesn't matter. Unless you are doing contract job your hours doesn't really matter to be honest.

  • +1

    Those hours are not, really, that excessive. You could talk to the boss about only taking the 1/2 for lunch and going back to the original hours, but, getting together with your fellow employees at lunch hour is a good way to bond and learn something for your future career. Often the way to get a job is to know people who already work at a place and the better network you have the more chances you will have. Building up a reputation for delivery, and not being "difficult", makes you more valuable to the company - very important when performance negotiations occur. It also gives you a leg up when going elsewhere. Maybe you can find something you like doing for the commute, like reading, listening to ebooks, learning a language etc; then the commute doesn't feel so long.

    Best of luck for your career.

  • +1

    I wouldn't sweat on an extra 30 mins per day - unless you have out of work commitments (Family, sport, etc) that you must get to. Once you move up the ranks you'll practically be living at the office anyway.

  • +5

    Welcome to the world of professional services.

    When I was a graduate, making similar money to you, I was working 50-60 hours a week pretty regularly. Not all the time, but enough that it was not a particularly noteworthy occurrence.

    Frankly, you have two choices … either get on board and seek to advance your career, or choose a different occupation. Professional services firms operate on the principle that the day is done when the work is done. Not when the clock reads 5.30.

    • +2

      Now we get to the nub of the problem. Management are usually crap at providing people with required outcomes and so people are paid on the number of hours they are in the office. If management just clearly said, "we want this by then" then the hours somebody is in the office is irrelevant. But, most of the time, management don't have clear guidelines. It is why outsourcing contracts, by and large, don't work for services. Management doesn't provide the outsourcer with clear guidelines as to what is in, and out, of contract so everything becomes an added extra cost. I would love to see a true cost benefit analysis of most of the outsourcing contracts out there to see what just how much money is being saved compared to the loss of customer service. The other issue is once you lose your Domain knowledge you have nobody who can hold the outsourcer to account. The less people we have coming up through the system the less people with Domain knowledge. Some of the big companies are beginning to try to rebuild onshore; because they are beginning to understand the Faustian deal they have made. In my experience, they don't know what they want but they certainly know when they want it by and the deadlines are, always, ridiculously short. This then leads to there is never time to do it right in the first place, so then they have to find time/money to get it redone as a pastiche.

      • +1


        most of the time, management don't have clear guidelines.

        I think you are quite correct here. My experience in the Australian workplace is that 'management' is largely a joke. Few managers are actually qualified in management; most are promoted to management level due to seniority/incompetence/nepotism/connections.

        If management just clearly said, "we want this by then" then the hours somebody is in the office is irrelevant.

        Agreed. But in maybe 50 different jobs (full time, contract, etc) I have had in my life, I have never encountered this.

        Of course if you work at a public-facing area you need to be there for specified hours, but the vast majority of jobs simply don't require specific office hours. But there is little concept in Australian management of actual measurable job performance. Rather, it is attendance which is valued more. And the boring drone, Bill, who puts in those extra hours is rated higher than Jenny, who does more work, better, in less time. In fact, Jenny is viewed with suspicion and disdain.

        A further example of this has been the utter failure of 'work from home' in Australia. We lag so far behind comparable countries. Working from home is viewed as something for bludgers or malingerers. (Despite evidence that in many areas it is much more productive and effective.)

        But in Australia attendance is more important than work performance. It is a juvenile, even infantile view, but is the manner by which incompetent middle management can both justify and cover up their own shortcomings.

        • This is very true. Surely the outcome is more important than the hours. People should be rewarded for efficiency.

  • +4

    Sorry to pop your bubble. You don't get paid like you're in Maccas.

    Try work at Big 4s with 80hrs a week, all unpaid OT.

    • +4

      I work in a local accounting firm, but it sucks that this is seen as the norm. It isn't and it shouldn't be. The more hours you work the more you're making for your employer, it's only fair that you're paid for it. Otherwise don't passive aggressively push people to do it. It's horrible how everyone is brainwashed to accept it. People just go with it. And now it's too late to do anything about it without getting a bunch of "working professionals" jumping on your back telling you that "it is what it is" no it isn't, and it shouldn't be. Time is the most valuable thing we have, we literally trade it for money, being taken advantage of and just going with it otherwise we lose our jobs is downright crazy and I can't understand how it's become such a casual thing that people accept. Am I just overreacting to this?

      • +1

        Just being realistic here.

        Haven't you heard of the golden path of accounting goal ?

        The game after graduating is straight 5 years of shithole in Big 4s , then go commercial raking over $150k pa. Don't stay any longer.

        It's mutual. The Big 4s know this and people are doing it willingly knowing this as well.

    • Exactly! I don't any of the accounting roles I've done have been less than 50hrs a week. During Month-end, quarter end and year-ends - we'd be lucky to leave before 9pm

  • Would you rather leave work at 5.30 with no lunch break, or leave at 6 after having a leisurely 1hr lunch?

  • +2

    Welcome to the working world. It gets worse.

  • +2

    I'm in a similar boat. I earn $49,500 a year and work 11 hours a day on average with a 15 min break for lunch (8.30pm to 7.30pm but often have to take work home) in a professional role, with a 2-hour commute each way. My hair is falling out from stress, I don't have time to see my family and I'm chronically underweight due to lack of time to prepare and eat food (I can't afford on my salary to buy it pre-made all the time). I often think about throwing myself off a particular bridge in the city when I walk along it in the morning. Work doesn't get easier or much better with time, unfortunately; it's just how the job market is for anyone outside trades these days.

    • +4

      Shiny that is terrible. What can Ozbargainers do to help? What field are you in?

      • +2

        Law. There's not much that can be done to help, since there are likely 200-500 experienced applicants for any given legal role in Australia (so I'd be too easily replaceable to kick up more of a fuss around work conditions, and any sign of weakness will be exploited by colleagues given the cutthroat competitiveness). I'm just holding on for as long as possible so I can build my skills up sufficiently to make the exit to a government role (or a firm with a less prehistoric view on work flexibility and family responsibilities).

        • +2

          Jeez, you are being heavily underpaid. How many years PQE are you? Even at 1-2 you can definitely pretty easily find jobs across the market in law firms paying twice what you've got now, which will at least make the hours more palatable (and you'll be able to afford proper food for yourself as well as maybe even rent to reduce your commute). That'll make it easier to exit into a role with lighter hours further down the track as well.

          Unfortunately the life of junior in law is inherently shit, since seniors don't give a shit about anyone but themselves - I know how it is first hand. Feel free to send me a PM if you need to chat.

          • +1

            @hybridex: 1 PQE. I started on 45k, so there's that. I'm at a 'boutique'. A good friend of mine works at an upper-mid with 3 PQE, also in the CBD, and is still working appalling hours (often to midnight and Saturdays) on a hair over 80k pa, which doesn't give much encouragement.

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