Hi guys!

I'm required to put in about 6 hours of work per month from home, during a weekend. At my 'level' the company officialy doesnt compensate overhours. Says so in my employment contract.

This weekend a network server change requires the small IT-staff to be present for <>3 hours to test the network. Also, my turn to do the 6-hours job. All-in-all i will be spending a full workday dedicated to work!!!

How can i best make it clear to my manager, that I dont much enjoy "woking for charity"?


stenya's picture
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... you're doing your job. I would recommend that you NOT use that phrase with your manager. To be honest, if one of my analysts was upset about working 9 hours on a weekend day -- especially when the server work had been planned in advance, and he had agreed to the 6-hrs/month on-call requirement -- I would question his suitability for an IT job. Overtime just comes with the territory.  
I'm not sure where you're located, or if your employment contract specifically limits the number of overtime hours you're required to work, but in the US, a salaried IT employee can be required to work nights / weekends for no additional pay. If this is the first time it's happened to you, I would show up with a smile and just do the work ... *without* complaining about losing your Saturday. If this starts happening every weekend, then sure, go ahead and ask your manager about how long this is expected to go on, and whether she'll be offering some kind of compensatory time off.  It's reasonable to find out what her expectations are, so you can decide if this is really the best place for you to be working.
In my 20+ years in IT, I've usually worked ~45 hours a week, with occasional 70-hour weeks during project deployments or other labor-intensive times. That might mean starting work at 7am and leaving at 8pm Monday - Friday, plus a full 8-10 hours on Saturday and a half-day on Sunday. It's not fun, but sometime that's required to get the servers replaced or a bug fix in. 
Sorry if this disappoints you... I hope you're enjoying the job, overall.


mike_bruns_99's picture
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Full Disclosure, this is coming from a US perspective.  I fully understand the culture is very different in other countries. I'd be interested in feedback from others.

One of the benefits (and drawbacks) of a salaried position is time flexibility.   Especially in IT, there can be long hours depending on the workload.  Alternatively, if you need to take time-off for personal reasons, it's typically OK.  Need to schedule a doctor's appointment during the day, it's normally fine as long as you make sure the job gets done.    

The key is to have a healthy work-life balance.  As Chris said, if this becomes frequent, work through the expectations with your manager.  There are some people who are much happier with a very formal structure.  They punch a time-clock so there is no ambiguity.  However, those jobs are typically lower paid.   

To me, your company and manager isn't being unreasonable at all.

rdar's picture
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If you are salaried, then you are already being paid for this work. 

A good manager recognizes that you are putting in a lot of extra hours.  As a manager, I personally would allow you to leave a few hours early the week before or after to 'make up' for the time you spend on the weekend - or maybe even a full day during the week.  However, that is no means a requirement since overtime is included in your salary already. 


duplicate_account_MarkAus's picture

I agree with the above - If you're salaried any "overtime" is already factored into the salary - an arrangement you agreed to.  You said this in your question.

Go back and check your employment agreement - it probably has a variation on the wording that you need to work hours or duties as determined by the company. 

If I was your manager I'd take a dim view of coming to me asking for compensation on top of what you previously agreed to.  It certainly doesn't sound like the company is being unreasonable in the scenario you outlined, so do the work you agreed to do.



merasmus's picture

I'm working in a Benelux-country, with reasonable flexible hours. According to my manager today the 11th of the month I have 9 hours overtime. Usually i dont take these time off. The workload is requires us to put in more hours than required, incl. the IT-manager.

Just today when he mentioned the 11 hours overtime, its excluding my occasional weekend work. Though I dont mind occasional weekend work my wife does.. My employment contract states occasional overwork isnt compensated without stating exactly how many hours they may require me to work overtime "for free".

Thanks for the replies!

met vriendelijke groet,


dagar's picture

I am curious about what others have to say as well on this as I am in IT and live in the US.  I have thought that my company was a little on the stingy side with days off especially with overtime requirements.  After the 1st year it is 10 days a year for time off (sick/vacation/personal, whatever...) and caps at 14 days after 10 years.  My previous direct complained about it (along with my current direct as well).  One Saturday afternoon/evening a month for updates is expected as far as overtime along with any emergencies that come up.




merasmus's picture

Just last week I asked my manager about these overtimehours, to compensate. He says its part of my contract. Basically my weekendwork is for 'free'.


met vriendelijke groet,