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Why accountancy contractors need to take a break this Christmas

Paystream News


Tuesday 5th Dec, 2017

Limited company contractors working in the accounting and finance sectors need to make sure they take a proper break from their work this Christmas, as new research has found many find it hard to switch off from their jobs.

According to the results of a survey carried out by, three-quarters of accounting workers admit to checking their phones or work emails while they are meant to be on holiday, with 40 per cent confessing to looking several times a day, OnRec reports.

Three in ten accountants believe there is nothing they can do about being contacted by clients while they are meant to be taking a break.

However, if contractors let their clients know well in advance that they will be unavailable at certain times, expectations can be managed and there is no reason that accountants should feel as though they need to check their phones or emails during holiday periods. compared the findings of the survey to one that it carried out five years ago. It was found that fewer people now have a work-life balance that they are happy with. Back in 2012, just 16 per cent of accountancy workers admitted to checking their phones several times a day while on holiday.

In 2017, such is the 'always on' culture adopted by many workers that 24 per cent of respondents even confessed to missing a family wedding due to work, while 22 per cent have missed out on an event at their child's school and 14 per cent have had to miss a funeral.

Overall, six in ten accountants said they had missed important events, compared to three in ten five years ago.

In that time, smartphone usage has soared, as has self-employment, but this doesn't mean that contractors and freelancers can't still enjoy a healthy work-life balance. The key is managing clients' expectations to prevent them from hassling.

Simon Wright, Operations Director at, commented: "No matter how much energy staff have and apply to their work, everyone needs to take a break.

"It has been proven time and time again that a good holiday, catch up on sleep and letting go of the day-to-day issues - whether for a few days or a couple of weeks - will mean that staff return with renewed enthusiasm and are even more productive when they return to work."