Over two thirds (67 per cent) of 18-26 year olds have admitted to ‘faking’ the extent of their workloads by staying late at the office beyond their contracted hours, according to a YouGov poll commissioned by global technology company Ricoh. This figure equates to nearly 1.2 million young professionals in the UK.

These findings are included in a new report – titled Overhauling a culture of ‘presenteeism’ at work which examines the extent to which young professionals are truly being given the platform to build a successful career in the UK.  

Polling 1,249 knowledge workers across the UK, the research also revealed that 39 per cent of 18-26 year-olds believe working away from the office could damage their career progression, while nearly half (41 per cent) feel their bosses favour staff that work over their contracted hours in the office.

Young workers appreciate the relationship between digital skills and success, with nearly half (47 per cent) calling for the government to connect employers with technology experts, and a third (31 per cent) calling for it to provide grants and funding for the provision of new technologies to enable a more flexible workforce.

As digital natives naturally accustomed to using mobiles and tablet computers for work and pleasure, young British workers are hit hardest by the impact of this old-fashioned working etiquette. Only by freeing the country’s future leaders from the shackles of a ‘presenteeist’ culture at work can we truly foster wider innovation and positive change.

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