How many hours do we work?

Work a 38-hour week, do you? Well, according to the human resources business Acerta the average Belgian worker only puts in 24 hours a week, though these calculations also include employees on a part-time contract!

Acerta took a look at 40,000 contracts and came to the conclusion that employees only work 63% of the maximum hours set out in labour contracts. Of course, some people work part-time and that drags down the total. Then there are also holidays including public holidays and employees can also take time off due to illness or in order to care for others.

In comparison with four years ago the length of contracts rose by 1%, though there has also been a slight increase in absences.  All in all, in Flanders and Wallonia we are working slightly more.  Brussels is somewhat behind, but differences between the regions are small.  In Flanders more people do work full-time than in Francophonia.  Flemings are off work more often though!

People in the 20-40 age bracket are more likely to work full-time than people over 50.  The over-50's are off work more often too.  The type of business also plays a role.  There's more part-time work in SMEs though people are less likely to be absent.

Acerta stresses that their analysis is based on what's in contracts.  They did not look at the actual situation on the work floor.