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How many hours do you work a week


Active Member
We've been having a debate in the agency over how many agencies really work late or long hours.
When I was Creative DirectorI personally used to be the last one out of the agency locking the building up at either 8.00 or midnight.

So for all you web designers and web developers who have or are in agencies or companies. How many hours do you work on average per week without getting paid extra?.


I work from 7am till 7 or 8pm depending on how much work I have to do .. also thats 6 days a week generally...


Senior Member
I work 9ish until 5ish. We aren't exactly flexitime, it is more flexi-trust. If I take a long lunch/gym lunchtime I stick around until 6ish.

I do a fair amount of reading/research outside of work hours, CMS info, app development, HTML5...I don't get paid extra for that.


Staff member
Not web design but....I can work as many as 24 hours a day 7 days a week but I'm not necessarily doing anything physical due to it being render time, I just need to be around to keep a check on things.

Physical work, ie in front of pc doing stuff - as much as needed but 12 hours a day is usually a limit for me although I have been known to extend that if I want to get a render started 'before bed' type affair.

It is a bit of a grey area when you work from home though.... and I do kind of work 'when I'm in the mood' meaning I may work late at night rather than say in the morning.
There is a culture of unpaid overtime in our industry and often it seems like people are in a competition to see how late they can stay at work, almost like it is a failure or weakness to leave first or on time as if you are not committed to your role / the business. It does happen and I think it is total BS. It wouldn’t be as bad if you were regularly awarded for your hard work, i.e regular bonus or meals / trips etc, but I’m sure most of the time it doesn’t happen. It didn’t for me and I don’t think I really got a thanks as it was almost expected!

I used to totally minimise the amount of extra work I did if I wasn’t getting paid. Why should I work for free? I firmly believe as long as I work my ass off while working my normal hours I shouldn’t be obliged to work any extra and don’t feel bad about being the first to leave at 5.30 as I knew that I worked hard all day. I did find myself working the occasional night until about 8 or even 9 pm because there was a pitch the next day and of course someone agreed it would be good to aim to do a weeks’ worth of work in 2 days! So I did take one for the team when they really did need the extra resource.

It’s all about the work / life balance and if you are working silly hours then it’s not good for you. Our Creative Director seemed to expect people to put in the extra work as did he, yet his sickness record was fairly poor. It would probably be more productive to therefore not work yourself to death at every available opportunity.

Anyway, in my job now I not only get paid for every single hour of overtime I do, I get paid x1.5 for it also, which is amazing and probably puts me in the 0.01% of designers / developers in our industry that get paid for every hour they work. Overtime pay FTW!!!

Anyway, to answer your post I work about 40-45 hours per week, occasionally it has reached 50 - 60 hours when there was some really urgent work on. 40 hours is my contracted hours.
I have to agree with Rich there. My contracted hours are 42.5 a week with at least 45 mins commute each way which is unpaid, in fact the opposite. My basic renumeration doesn't justify doing lots of unpaid work especially as it won't be financially rewarded. As a director of an agency, they have to do the extra hours as it's their business at risk, but the difference is that their financial renumeration makes it worth it! However in their position, if I could help it, I would try and stick to a normal working day for work/life balance.

It's unfair from an employer to expect their employees to work extra hours unpaid in any profession. If you need people to work late, sort out your deadlines, consider your available resources and pay your employee for the extra work!
Contact Hours - 9am-5.30pm with one hour lunch.

Actual Hours (on average) 8.25am-7pm with 20mins here or there.

Approx 8-10 Hours a week extra unpaid without the odd little brief or job that comes home on a night or weekend.
I'm self employed and typically clock anywhere between 30-60 hours per week depending upon the number of projects on the go and how hungry I am.

In theory I get paid (eventually) for every hour. In practice, at least 10% of that time doesn't get billed, either because it's R&D time or because it's the usual trickle of small requests which can be impractical to bill for unless there is a support or retainer agreement in place.

If you're working excessive hours without getting paid, you need to stop and think what the hell you are doing. Work-life balance is important and if you reckon you are just pushing hard to get on top of things, think about how many years you have been telling yourself that. Also, productivity degrades - in fact, there are many reasons for keeping the hours sane and not mugging yourself.


Senior Member
If nothing else this thread has made me feel really lucky that I work for a great agency! Both of the directors have kids, so don't want to be working all day and night. They also appreciate us as staff and quite often treat us when its quiet after a busy period!

If we had a busy previous week, it is a sure fire bet that Tuesday they will take advantage of Dominoes 2 for Tuesday!