It’s often inevitable for business owners to have employees work overtime. At times, employees jump at the chance to earn extra income and it could even create a healthy work environment.
Problems arise with excessive overtime hours that result in negative effects. Overtime may help an employer who doesn’t have to hire additional workers, but it is possible the excessive hours cause more problems than they are worth. Sometimes the employees themselves don’t realize the harm too much overtime can cause.
Here are six negative effects of making employees work overtime:
- Increased health issues — Working excessive overtime could cause increased risks for high blood pressure, mental health problems, back injuries that involve manual lifting, and heavy alcohol consumption, according to Circadian, a workforce and safety solutions firm. Health issues may rise when working 50 to 60 hours a week, but increase significantly when working more than 60 hours.
- Safety risks — Working long hours could impair performance while lowering attention abilities. More errors may occur for employees at medical facilities and accidents result when drivers for companies experience fatigue. Circadian reports firms with higher rates of overtime have more fatigue-related problems.
- Decreased productivity — Employee output begins to drop dramatically after 50 hours a week, CNBC notes. Excessive overtime may be completely non-productive. A Stanford University study found that a person who works 70 hours doesn’t produce more than someone working 55 hours. But productivity begins to fall for people working 50 hours. Sleep deprivation also contributes to decreased productivity.
- High turnover rates — Businesses are ultimately hurt by the results of too much overtime when fatigued and frustrated employees just give up. They can’t put in the extra hours any longer and start looking elsewhere for employment. This often happens when workers aren’t paid enough for working the overtime hours.
- Morale problems — Firms where many employees are working excessive overtime have more morale problems in the workplace than companies with normal overtime hours. Health problems and fatigue from long working hours can trigger a high amount of absences. Morale problems contribute to absenteeism, low productivity, and high turnover rates.
- Troubles with family life — Relationships can be damaged even for workers who love their jobs and want to work overtime, according to Business Insider. When they spend so much time at work, they have little regard for communication with spouses, partners, or children at home. The extra-long hours that may increase health issues can also cause problems within the family.
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