City contractors work longer than their contracted hours, yet still believe that they are being productive, according to new research by recruiter, Morgan McKinley.

A survey of over 200 London contractors working in the professional services sector revealed that 77% were working over time, and that 57% of those doing so felt they maintained their productivity in those hours.

In contrast, only half of the permanent staff who were surveyed felt that they stayed productive whilst working overtime.

The research also found that 65% of those working overtime felt obliged to do so.

Despite this, contractors said flexible working options were available to them, with 49% of respondents reporting that they could work from home, 58% benefited from a flexible start and finish time, and 14% were able to put in reduced hours such as a four day week.

Hakan Enver, operations director at Morgan McKinley, said:

“It’s interesting that a high proportion of contractors report that they believe the extra hours worked are productive, perhaps signifying the emphasis on temporary staff to prove their worth and make a difference in the role they’re undertaking.”

Enver added that those who feel they have no choice but to work overtime should make themselves aware of their employment rights.

He said:

“Contractors who are paid on an hourly rate should not be too concerned about long hours as they will get paid for them. However, for those on day rates it is useful to be aware that the Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) provides comparable pay and conditions for PAYE contractors where a similar permanent role exists.”

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