Work emails after-hours don’t bother Americans

Only about three quarters of working Americans have email at work, but those who do say receiving and responding to emails after they’ve left the office isn’t a big deal.

According to a Gallup poll, six in 10 workers say they check email outside of normal business hours. Of those, few said the amount of emails they respond to is unreasonable or that doing so negatively affects their well being or personal relationships.

Here are some of the statistics Gallup learned about workers who log on after they clock out:

  • 67% of people said emailing outside of work didn’t have much effect on their well being.
  • 17% said it had a positive effect.
  • 80% of people said checking their email didn’t have much effect on their personal relationships.
  • 21% said after-hours emailing is important for advancement at their companies.

Workers who check email after-hours say they either just take a quick look to make sure it’s not an emergency or respond only in critical situations. Gallup also found that only about a fifth report checking and responding the same way they would during their working hours.

After-work emails have been called a “national epidemic” in Canada, and some companies and government agencies in Canada, Germany, France and Brazil have taken steps to limit after-hours emails. It would seem, however, that U.S. workers accept or even enjoy staying connected. Nearly 80% of employees said that responding to emails after hours isn’t essential to advancement. Instead, most responses are voluntary.