If You Want to Work Fewer Hours, This Is the Country for You

Last year, it was reported that the U.S. is the most overworked country in the developed world — and many of us wouldn’t dispute it. Answering emails through the night, freelancing on the weekends, working a side hustle: Most of us have done it (more specifically regarding checking emails at home, 43 percent of us have admitted to doing it). But a new study released this month shows that while us Americans may be overworked and burnt out, we actually aren’t the hardest working country by any means.

RS Components analyzed International Labour Organization data for almost 100 countries to see which countries are working the most and the least. The United States came in at No. 25 with 37 average number of weekly working hours — eight notches below the United Kingdom with 36 hours. The U.S. wasn’t alone in its 37 average hours, though; we join European countries Azerbaijan, Belgium, Ireland, Italy, the Republic of Moldova and Spain, as well as Asian countries Krygyzstan and Afghanistan.

Hardest working countries
Image: RS Components.

The top five countries working the lowest amount of hours each week — and the countries we wouldn’t mind moving to after seeing this list — are the following:
1. Netherlands: 32 hours, amounting to under 6.5 hours/day across five days
2. Australia, New Zealand, Rwanda: 33 hours
3. Denmark, Norway: 34 hours
4. Belarus, Georgia, Germany: 35 hours
5. UK, Austria, Canada, Finland, Switzerland, Israel, Sweden, France: 36 hours

That’s it; we’re moving to the Netherlands.

“It is clear from the data that Dutch companies value quality over quantity when it comes to working hours, and believe efficiency does not come from working extensive hours each day. Often associated with being laid-back, this is definitely reflected in their working culture, which is also the case for Australia and New Zealand, who work the second-lowest number of hours in the globe at 33,” the press release sent via email states.

The country working its employees the hardest? Qatar, averaging 49 hours per week. The bottom five is rounded out by Myanmar and Mongolia with 48 hours and Pakistan and Brunei at 47 hours.

Take a look at the full report on RS Components’ website.

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