WorkTime - work hours

March 1, 2024

10 min read

How many hours in a work year do you actually operate?

Did you know that it is possible to gauge one's level of work-life balance by looking at the average working hours per year? If an employee works long hours, the good idea is to figure out the real yearly earnings. Finding out why keeping hours track each year might be beneficial as it will help you decide if it's worth your or your employees' time. Unexpectedly, historical records indicate a decreasing trend in average hours worked per year over the past 150 years, particularly in developed countries. Between 1880 and 2017, the average annual working hours for a full-time employed person in the United States alone decreased by about 40%, from over 3044 hours to approximately 1757 hours. In this post, we'll go over the importance of knowing how many working hours in a year there are, how to figure out how much one is actually active, how much an hourly wage is worth, and how time tracking software can help. Stay tuned and productive!

As a result of its amazing experience spanning over 20 years, WorkTime is a staff monitoring program that automatically estimates hours employees spent working and helps increase productivity.

Determining work hours: is it that simple?

In a typical week, someone who works full-time puts in about 40 hours. That's eight hours per day, seven days per week. Because there are 52 weeks in a year, the average number of hours worked is 2,080. Easy and obvious, huh? Nevertheless, it's quite uncommon for individuals to genuinely work 2,080 hours annually. If you happen to, it might be worthwhile to discuss the possibility of incorporating breaks in your annual work schedule with your employer. If you're an employer, don't forget to regulate your schedule to remain productive yet have enough rest (for instance, using a productivity monitoring tool).

WorkTime allows you to monitor productivity to ensure your work hours are sufficient to achieve all the set goals on time. You can build a more efficient team using this solution.

What's the problem with estimations?

The mentioned figure doesn't take into account holidays or paid time off. The U.S. government acknowledges 11 federal holidays, and federal employees are entitled to all 11. If you're fortunate enough to enjoy the same benefit, you'll have an additional 88 hours subtracted from your yearly total.

In WorkTime, you can define working hours for every employee, including holidays, days off, vacation, etc. It will prevent you from making mistakes in calculations.

A Forbes survey found that U.S. workers receive 7.6 paid holidays every year, with:
  • New Year's Day (January 1)
  • Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Third Monday in January)
  • Washington's Birthday (or Presidents Day; the third Monday in February)
  • Memorial Day (Last Monday in May)
  • Juneteenth National Independence Day (June 19)
  • Independence Day (July 4)
  • Labor Day (First Monday in September)
  • Columbus Day (Second Monday in October)
  • Veterans Day (November 11)
  • Thanksgiving Day (Fourth Thursday in November)
  • Christmas Day (December 25)
  • The current state of the workplace has significantly changed over the past four years, primarily due to the absence of a physical workspace. Based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there was a higher prevalence of remote work in 2022 compared to 2019, with 34% of workers engaging in telecommuting either partially or distantly.

    What's the difference between paid time off & paid holidays?

    It is essential to clearly understand the distinction between paid time off and paid holidays, whether you are an employer, independent contractor, or an employee. While the US federal government doesn't mandate businesses to offer paid vacation, many companies typically provide employees with a range of 5 to 15 days of paid time off annually. On average, this equates to around 10 days per year. Out of all the developed countries, only the United States does not provide its employees with paid vacation days or holidays. This is due to the fact that the Fair Labor Standards Act does not mandate that employees be compensated for time that they have not worked, whereas federal law does not mandate vacation compensation.

    To sum up, the first case is compensated time off with no specific goals. Personal holidays are time employees can use for specific purposes. This can be for religious holidays, special celebrations, or any other reason.

    Why does it matter to estimate work hours?

    Calculate the hourly wage level

    Consider calculating the actual amount you make per hour if you are paid a salary and routinely work more than forty hours per week. This is something that you should consider doing. For employers, it is also critical to calculate work hours to allocate labor resources and wages properly based on the available budget.

    With WorkTime, you will see who attends the workplace or skips some days without letting you know. It also helps to detect how active certain workers are during the day.

    You can also determine your yearly income by multiplying your hourly wage by the number of work hours in a year. Understanding an annual salary as an hourly employee enables effective budgeting and facilitates better planning for personal expenses.

    Assess your work-life balance

    Many observations suggest that too many work hours lower productivity, and people significantly benefit from time off. By measuring annual work hours, one can assess their work habits and decide whether to cut hours, unplug on weekends, or take vacation.

    A healthy work-life balance is essential for employees. Their mental health improves, and the company reaps the benefits as well. More efficient, motivated, and productive staff are the result of a healthy work-life balance.

    Arrange for recreational pursuits

    When you have a good idea of how many hours in a work year there are, you can better allocate that time to things like self-improvement, fitness, hobbies, and volunteering.

    With WorkTime, you can detect how many hours you work in any interval of time, helping you to choose the best time for vacation and other types of leisure activities.

    Why is it vital to estimate how many hours employees work?

    There are numerous advantages for an independent contractor in keeping track of the total annual work hours worked and earnings throughout the year. One may initiate the process of decomposing yearly revenues and planning a budget by considering earnings for specific weeks, quarters, months, and years. Assessing your productivity becomes more straightforward. If you discover that you're consistently working more hours than initially planned and your hourly salary has noticeably decreased, it may be necessary to reassess your project pricing. Alternatively, consider refining your project time management to ensure a more strategic allocation of your annual work hours. You may need to get an app that keeps track of hours worked or set aside more room if you can't get work done. If you work from home, you might find it much more productive to have a separate room as your office instead of trying to work in a shared area. Calculate your effective hourly rate and compare it to your target wages. Even salaried employees with a standard 40-hour workweek can benefit from assessing their actual annual work hours. This evaluation provides valuable insights into the overall return on investment (ROI) from their employment. This type of computation can also assist hourly employees who may get additional compensation for working overtime in determining its effect on their overall hourly income. Likewise, those working part-time may choose to assess their income in relation to when they were employed full-time in order to determine which situation was more advantageous in terms of time allocation.

    WorkTime will let you know if any of your employees overwork and prevent them from burnout thanks to accurate reports on active and idle time. You can get support in staying organized with such software.

    Make a list of all the things that get in the way of your productivity and devise solutions. Try to figure out how to get more done in less time without sacrificing quality. Your staff hourly wage then should go up and their free time and overall satisfaction and efficiency will go up as a result.

    What things impact work hours?

    Work contracts

    Work contracts are one important aspect of the workplace. Schedules can be either set fixed or subject to negotiation based on the terms of the contract. To illustrate the difference, full-time employment contracts often imply 40 work hours each week, whereas part-time contracts may imply fewer work hours.

    Another important factor that can increase the overall number of work hours in a year is whether the employment contract stipulates shift work or overtime.

    Work type

    The nature of the job itself plays a crucial role in determining annual work hours. Occupations in professional and creative fields often demand more working hours compared to desk jobs or roles involving repetitive tasks. Hence, the complexity and workload inherent in a job significantly impact the required working hours. Work type may also impact engagement and motivation of employees, which, in turn, impacts their productivity hours.

    WorkTime allows for significant improvements in efficiency and productivity as a result of higher staff engagement.

    Work flexibility

    A work environment factor is flexibility. Work contracts may prohibit 9-to-5 schedules and 40-hour weeks. Some organizations allow employees to work remotely and choose their own work hours. It is also necessary to consider freelance jobs. As reported by Freelancermap in 2017, an average of 47 hours per week was invested by 1,386 survey participants in their work, showcasing a notable increase compared to conventional work hours. Freelancing has changed jobs around the world, especially in recent years. Freelancers can spend whatever work hours to fulfill deadlines on different tasks. In fact, freelancers sometimes work more than 40 hours a week upon their wish! It is easy to see when using an hour tracker.

    Time tracking software like WorkTime can help track hours worked by freelancers. You can see if they really do their job or just waste time.

    Improvement of job performance

    Enhancements in work performance can also impact working hours. For instance, task automation or work processes streamlining can potentially decrease work hours in the long run. This may lead to increased work productivity but reduced work hours.

    Work delegation, improved work organization, and enhanced team performance are additional factors that can contribute to a reduction in work hours.

    3 approaches to defining the number of annual work hours

    The overall number of working hours will be reduced if you work part-time. In the event that you take a significant number of sick days or vacation days, your total number of hours worked per year will also be reduced altogether. In addition, for both employers and employees, comprehending the total number of work hours in a year is not a particularly challenging task. Step-by-step instructions are provided below to help you calculate the typical number of hours you put in over the year.

    1. Estimate hours per week

    Start by figuring out how many hours you work in a week. In order to be considered full-time, the average US citizen works forty hours per week, or eight hours per day, five days a week. No matter what number you use, you need to know how many hours you worked in week X before you can multiply that amount by the number of weeks in a year. To sum up, the formula is: hours per day x days per week = hours worked per week. To find the same figure for remote or hybrid work, you just need to input corresponding values (daily and weekly work hours) in the suggested formula and those provided below. You also need to differentiate between various types of distant work:
  • Fixed. This schedule is the same as traditional 9-to-5, with the only difference being that all assignments are done remotely.
  • Flexible. Employees on a flexible schedule typically have to put in a certain amount of working hours during the day, with the remaining hours up to them.
  • Compressed. A compressed schedule allows for more downtime while simultaneously increasing the number of working hours.
  • Split. Employees on a split schedule work one set of hours and then take a break (sometimes several hours) before starting their second set of hours.
  • Freelance. Freelancers and nomads may choose one of the earlier schedules, but they can select their own hours.
  • In the case of a hybrid schedule, simply combine a traditional method with the one listed above. Use an app for keeping track of work hours when letting your staff work remotely to make sure they don't trick you.

    With WorkTime, businesses can monitor remote employees in an effective and respectful way. Keep an eye on their engagement, work hours, workflow, and other pertinent metrics without being intrusive.

    2. Multiply the average by 52

    There are a total of 52 weeks in a year. Although it's unlikely that you'll work every week due to vacations and other time off. Thus, for now, don't deduct those non-working weeks.

    Simply multiply the weekly hours you calculated earlier by 52 to determine your total annual working hours.

    You may carry out all estimations manually or using an online work hours calculator.

    3. Integrate PTO hours

    Your calculation isn't finished. Paid time off (PTO) hours must be determined and included next (any of these):
  • Vacation hours paid.
  • Public and work holidays.
  • Special occasions (marriages and births or, vice versa, funerals).
  • Personal reasons (usually, when there are trusted relations between an employer and an employee).
  • The average company gives its workers two weeks of paid vacation per year (if any). This usually takes 80 hours each year. If you estimate 2080 hours per year, remove 80 hours to get your average or projected paid time off. In any case, you can always check whether staff was present or absent at the particular time using the hours tracking app. Your weekly workload may affect how many working hours in a year there are for you, but this should provide you with 2000 hours per year. Salaried workers may work more than 40 hours each week. If an employer gives staff extra PTO, they may remove it from working hours.

    On the whole, the formula will look this way: (Number of hours per week x 52) - [(number of days of PTO + number of holidays) x number of hours per day] = total hours in a year.

    General formula and example

    To calculate your annual income as an hourly employee, you can use the following formula: Annual Income = Hourly Wage×Number of Hours Worked Per Week × Number of Weeks Worked Per Year Assuming a standard workweek of 40 hours, here's a more detailed breakdown: Annual Income = Hourly Wage × 40 hours/week × Number of Weeks Worked Per Year For example, if your hourly wage is $15 and you work 40 hours per week for 52 weeks a year, the calculation would be: Annual Income = $15/hour × 40 hours/week × 52 weeks/year = $15/hour × 2,080 hours/year = $31,200

    So, in this example, the annual income would be $31,200 for an hourly wage of $15 per hour working 40 hours per week for 52 weeks.

    How many work hours are there in a full-time year?

    The number of hours a worker puts in each week shows whether they are a full-time or part-time employee.

    A full-time worker in the United States is thought to work about 40 hours per week on average. Some businesses see hours less than these (35–37) as not working full-time. Some also let you work extra hours, which means you can work more than 40 hours a week.

    Individuals who work full-time can get additional benefits offered by the employer. The following fall under this category:
  • A pension
  • Health insurance
  • Paid vacation days
  • Sick leave
  • Paid vacation days
  • However, most firms in the US and many other countries do not choose to provide such perks to their part-time workers.

    Bottom line

    An annual salary is influenced by various factors, including the staff's typical workweek's number of days and hourly rate. Determining annual work hours allows everyone in the company to calculate hourly pay precisely. Additionally, this assessment aids in evaluating the work-life balance employees maintain, helping employers discern whether adjustments are necessary for personal or professional well-being. Certainly, when adhering to the conventional 40-hour work schedule, the total number of work hours put in each year will be reduced to 2,080. On the other hand, to get the correct figures, it is still required to take into consideration vacation time and holidays. After studying these tips, you can calculate annual work hours and change work schedules to enhance performance. Wondering what the best app to track my work hours is? WorkTime helps you assess employee productivity - get a free trial today!

    Estimating working time made easy with the innovative solution from WorkTime! Non-invasive, simple-to-use, and effective.

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