For Many Workers the Boss’s Emails Never Stop

PHILADELPHIA– June 19, 2013 – For many workers the boss’s emails never seem to stop, according to a survey by Right Management, the talent and career management experts within ManpowerGroup. Many bosses send employees emails after work hours and expect them to respond.

More than a third of employees report getting work-related emails after work hours. In addition, 6% get the boss’s emails on weekends and 9% while on vacation.

When does your boss send you work-related emails and expect you to respond?

After work hours


On weekends


During my vacation


Seldom or never outside work



“The boundaries of the workplace are expanding and now reach deeper into employees’ lives, especially now that mobile technology is taken for granted,” said Monika Morrow, Senior Vice President of Career Management at Right Management, which provides talent, career and outplacement services to Fortune 500 companies. “Many find they can no longer just leave the office at the office, and instead will get emails or calls while commuting or shopping, or even sitting down to dinner. One has to ask…is this a convenience or an imposition?”

Contributing to the constant emails, Morrow explained, is the growing number of people working virtually. “By nature, their work hours aren’t as structured, and individuals may turn on their computer when making morning coffee or just before retiring. They expect to get messages at all hours.”

“There are also emergencies, when one’s supervisor needs to know something right away, and every employee, particularly a manager, can expect to be contacted at an odd hour,” Morrow said. “But the survey findings suggest such intrusions have now become routine, not an exception. I suppose some workers can adjust accordingly, but for others it’s added stress when they ought to be relaxing with family or friends.”

Morrow believes the trend may reflect the personality of the boss. “By nature, they’re achievers who have trouble shutting down at the end of the day. Moreover, they’re probably sitting at their laptop and not thinking that their message will reach someone at the market or gym. That’s part of always being available via mobile technology. Keep in mind, we’re talking about emails that aren’t just informational, but ones that call for engagement, a response, and probably right away.”

Just because one receives an email at midnight, it does not mean an immediate response is necessary, advised Morrow. “People hear the ‘ding’ and act reflexively. It’s better to judge whether or not an instant response is expected, when the next morning may be just fine for all concerned. Furthermore, it’s rude to be checking email or texts during a family meal.”

For senior-level managers, however, it is important for them to be available at all times. “There are emergencies and problems that need to be addressed at almost any hour. At the same time, bosses should think twice about messaging at all hours. They may think they’re being productive, but the effect may be the opposite.”

Morrow worries that for more and more workers their home life is not their own and work never far from mind. It‘s been a trend for several years, and we don’t know where it’s headed.”
The survey of 422 workers was conducted via an online survey between May 16 and June 15.

About Right Management

Right Management is the global leader in talent and career management workforce solutions. As the workforce consulting experts within ManpowerGroup, the firm designs and delivers solutions to align talent strategy with business strategy. Expertise spans Talent Assessment, Leader Development, Organizational Effectiveness, Employee Engagement, and Workforce Transition and Outplacement. With offices in over 50 countries, Right Management partners with companies of all sizes – including more than 80% of the Fortune 500 – to help grow and engage their talent, increase productivity and optimize business performance.

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Media Contact: Kate Huskin,, 414 906 6253