SOURCE: Hudson

November 15, 2006 06:00 ET

'Getting Away From It All' Going Out of Style?

Hudson Survey Finds Workers Clocking in When They Should be Tuning Out

NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 15, 2006 -- More than one-third (37 percent) of U.S. workers anticipate not using all of their time off this year, according to a new Hudson survey. In fact, one in four workers (24 percent) have not taken any time off this year, and an additional 14 percent have not taken a vacation longer than a long weekend.

When they do get away from work, 39 percent of employees check in with the office most days, if not every day. Add in those who call the office or check email occasionally and a resounding 72 percent of the work force stays in touch with the office to some extent when they are supposed to be winding down. Nearly all managers (87 percent) also keep in contact with the office while taking time off. That said, it is not surprising that two-fifths (38 percent) of workers and managers return from vacation no more relaxed or even more stressed than when they left as a result of the work they missed.

"Modern technology makes staying connected to work while on vacation easier than ever and helps to blur the line between work and personal time," said Peg Buchenroth, vice president, human resources, Hudson North America. "Workers are given that time for an important reason and managers need to play a role in reinforcing the significance of employees truly disconnecting from work, so that serious consequences such as burnout may be prevented."

When it comes to the holidays, many workers still do not get a chance to unwind. Half of employees say their company does not offer them any extra flexibility around the holidays in order to shop or make preparations. Approximately the same amount (54 percent) also indicates their office is no more casual during the holidays than the rest of the year.

"If workers are not allowing themselves to decompress while on vacation, the holidays may be a good opportunity for employers to help their staff unwind, as long as the work is still getting done," added Buchenroth. "Even simple acts such as a less formal dress code or allowing employees to work flexible hours help people loosen up a little."

Additional survey findings include:

--  More than half (53 percent) of government workers do not expect to use
    all of their vacation time this year.
--  Twenty-three percent of workers claim to be more productive during the
    holiday season than other times of the year.  Conversely, 37 percent of the
    work force admits to being less productive.
--  Only eight percent of workers earning more than $100k+ per year have
    not taken off from work this year.
--  Just 43 percent of workers ages 18-29 return from vacation more
    relaxed than when they left, compared to 53 percent of all workers.
--  Half of managers (49 percent) feel they have greater flexibility at
    work during the holiday season, and 42 percent state their office is more
    casual then as well.  Those figures are 37 percent and 35 percent,
    respectively, for all workers.
    
About the Survey

The Hudson holiday survey is based on a national poll of 1,914 U.S. workers conducted November 4-6, 2006 and was compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm (www.RasmussenReports.com). The margin of sampling error for a survey based on this number of interviews is approximately +/-2.4 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. A more detailed data report is available at www.hudson-index.com.

Hudson, one of the world's leading professional staffing, outsourcing and talent management solutions providers, also publishes the Hudson Employment IndexSM, a monthly measure of the U.S. work force's confidence in the employment market. The next Hudson Employment Index will be released on December 6.

Hudson

Hudson (NASDAQ: HHGP) is a leading provider of permanent recruitment, contract professionals and talent management services worldwide. From single placements to total outsourced solutions, Hudson helps clients achieve greater organizational performance by assessing, recruiting, developing and engaging the best and brightest people for their businesses. The company employs more than 3,600 professionals serving clients and candidates in more than 20 countries. More information is available at www.hudson.com.

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