Sep 2013

New Zealand Families Suffering from Work Pressure – Study

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Results from servery found that work pressure had a significant impact on family time

Family timeKiwi families are under strain from mounting work commitments with parents saying they are too tired to play with their kids, regularly miss important occasions like birthdays and want to be home for dinner more often.

The findings were released today as part of the Hyundai Family Time Study* – a survey which looked at Kiwis’ attitudes on their family life.

The results found that work pressure had a significant impact on family time, with more than a sixth (17%) of those surveyed admitting that work commitments result in tension between themselves and their partner.

Respondents said relationships and family time were compromised due to the additional hours many of us put in at the office, with more than one in eight (13%) working more than 50 hours per week. Nearly half (48%) of the interviewees said they worked between 40-49 hours per week.

In addition to longer hours at the office, work travel also took up a huge chunk of family time. A sixth (16%) of all working Kiwis spent nights away from home for work at least once a month, with seven percent away from home at least once a week.

Parents surveyed said excess work commitments were a real problem when it came to prioritising family time.

Nearly six out of ten (59%) say work commitments are having a real impact on the quality of their family life. For some, this requirement is manageable (37%), while for others (22%) it is less manageable in their domestic life.

One of the concerns associated with working too many hours was parents’ inability to make it home to say goodnight and tuck their children into bed. More than a tenth (12%) of working New Zealanders said this was a problem for them.

Additional ways that work pressure negatively impacted on parents’ family time included parents missing their children’s sports/events, with nearly one in five (18%) respondents experiencing this.

A sixth (17%) of working New Zealanders said they were unable to make it home for dinner. For those who did make it home in time for dinner with their family, almost one in ten (9%) had to return to work immediately afterwards.

The study revealed that other disappointments for parents include working on weekends, with nearly three out of ten (28%) respondents admitting to this. A further fifth (21%) say they are too tired to play with the kids at night/weekends because of their work, and a sixth (16%) unable to go on holiday with their family.

When time was made available to spend with the family, road trips in the family car were the most commonly preferred activity; with more than three quarters (76%) of parents recognising this.

This was more common than staying at holiday homes/baches (69%) or going bush walking (59%) being on the water (52%) or camping (51%).

Going on a road trip in the family car was also one of the top 5 “best family moments” after Christmas Day and birthdays, but on par with summer holidays and family dinners:

Christmas Day was rated the best family moment by 75% of those surveyed. Birthdays followed, with more than two thirds of respondents (68%) choosing this event. Family dinners/bbqs/picnics were the preference of six out of ten (60%) New Zealanders, and road trips around New Zealand in the family car followed at 57%.

The survey was commissioned in conjunction with the Hyundai Family Time Project, a campaign which allows Kiwi families to win their share of family time.

Hyundai General Manager Andy Sinclair says the company has already helped fund family time for a number of its staff and customers and now wants to extend this opportunity to the general public.

“Our research showed that Kiwis have identified that lack of family time was a significant issue in their lives and our Family Time Project is one way we can help bring some deserving families closer together,” he says.

“The results of the study show some of our most enduring memories of family time have occurred during road trips and travel to holiday destinations. It is often during these car rides that families have uninterrupted quality time together, free from life’s daily distractions.

“As a car manufacturer we felt we had an opportunity to continue to support families wanting more quality time together,” says Sinclair.

To learn more about the campaign Kiwis can visit: www.familytimeproject.co.nz

New Zealand Families Suffering from Work Pressure – Study
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