Adecco Survey Reveals How Americans Plan to Balance Work (and Fun) This Holiday Season

Half of American Workers Plan to Multitask Holiday Shopping with Work

Dec 01, 2010, 09:00 ET from Adecco Staffing US

MELVILLE, N.Y., Dec. 1, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- This holiday season, American workers plan to juggle work and play by staying connected to the office while they simultaneously celebrate the season, according to a holiday Omnibus survey from Adecco Staffing US, part of the world's largest recruitment and workforce solutions provider.

According to the survey conducted by Opinion Research Corporation on behalf of Adecco, nearly half of American workers (46 percent) plan to make a dent in their holiday shopping during work hours -- either through online shopping while at work, shopping on lunch breaks, taking sick days or cutting out a little early periodically.

On the flip side, during their off-hours (scheduled vacation or employer holidays) workers indicate they do not plan to disconnect from the office.  In fact, 71 percent of workers whose jobs require the use of e-mail and voicemail regularly, plan to stay connected to the workplace throughout key holidays including Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day.

But it's not all work and no play for many employees. Despite the economy, 36 percent of employees think their companies' holiday parties will be similar to those from past years. Similarly, one in ten (11 percent) of Americans work for companies that held a holiday party last year and plan to hold one again this year -- just on a smaller scale. However, a third of Americans don't know the fun that can be had at a workplace party as 33 percent of workers polled are employed by a company that has never held a holiday party.

Additional survey findings include:

  • Americans on the West Coast and City-Dwellers Most Likely to Shop Online at Work: Americans who live in the Western part of the US (20 percent) are more likely to do holiday shopping online at work than are other US residents (10 percent). In addition, those who live in Metro areas (16 percent) are more likely to do holiday shopping online at work compared to those in non-Metro areas (7 percent).
  • Men and Parents More Likely to Check E-mail and Voicemail on Holidays: Among working Americans who rely on e-mail and voicemail for their job, men (80 percent) are more likely to say they will check work voicemail/e-mail on the specific holidays than women (60 percent). Similarly, those with children in their household (77 percent) are more likely to check work voicemail/e-mail on holidays than are households without children (65 percent).
  • Women More Inclined to Take a Seasonal Job over the Holidays: Women (28 percent) are slightly more likely than men (21 percent) to have taken a holiday job specifically for spending cash for holiday gifts.

"The holidays are a frenetic time for everyone, but particularly for the working population who is trying to balance and focus on work and year-end business, yet also find the time to meet all their personal obligations and celebrate the season a bit -- it's a real balancing act," said David Adams, Vice President of Learning and Development of Adecco Group North America.  "What we know about this holiday season is that workers understand and acknowledge the critical importance of their work and their jobs -- they take their jobs and professional obligations seriously both on and off the 'clock.'  That said, many are also ready to enjoy the holidays and are looking for a little flexibility in allowing them to get everything done, with many committing to stay connected to the office in off-time as a trade off."


This survey was conducted via telephone within the United States by Opinion Research Corporation on behalf of Adecco from November 11November 14, 2010 among 1,011 employed American adults ages 18 and older. Survey results have a margin of error +/- 3.08% for this sample size.

About the Adecco Group:

The Adecco Group, based in Zurich, Switzerland, is the world's leading provider of HR solutions. With over 29,000 FTE employees and more than 5,800 offices, in over 60 countries and territories around the world, Adecco Group offers a wide variety of services, connecting more than 500,000 colleagues with over 100,000 clients every day. The services offered fall into the broad categories of temporary staffing, permanent placement, outsourcing, consulting and outplacement. The Adecco Group is a Fortune Global 500 company.

Adecco S.A. is registered in Switzerland (ISIN: CH0012138605) and is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (ADEN).

About Adecco Group North America:

Every day we provide our clients with the talent they need, and help solve the business challenges they face today -- and will encounter tomorrow. Our clients rely on us for a wide range of workforce solutions including:

  • Contingent staffing and direct hire recruitment for large enterprise organizations across all skill sets
  • Workforce solutions and consulting including Managed Services Programs (MSP) & Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)
  • Career transition and leadership consulting
  • Specialty staffing, project solutions and consulting services

Additional information is available through our websites at and

About Opinion Research Corporation

Founded in 1938, Opinion Research Corporation (ORC) is a leading global market research firm with offices across the U.S., Europe and Asia Pacific region. ORC is an official partner of CNN, the most trusted name in news, on the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll.

SOURCE Adecco Staffing US