Almost half of accounting professionals don’t leave their desk for lunch

Research from the Robert Walters Career Lifestyle Survey1 has revealed that 45% of finance professionals do not leave their desk for lunch. 24% left their desk but remain in the office while just 31% left the office during their break while.

The survey also found that almost half (48%) of finance professionals take 30 minutes or less for lunch each day and 5% said they skip their lunch entirely.

Marcus Blackburn, Associate Director for accounting finance recruitment at Robert Walters, comments:

The scope of many accounting professionals’ roles has expanded in recent years, with employers looking for accountants to take an active role in helping to drive and shape elements of company strategy
However, this has had the knock on effect of putting many finance professionals under growing pressure, leading them to forgo their lunch break in order to meet deadlines and deliver on projects
Managers need to remain aware of the detrimental impact that this can have on the morale and productivity of staff, potentially leading to burnout when finance professionals feel under pressure not to take much needed breaks to relax and recharge during the day

The survey also found that 52% of finance professionals would consider leaving a role due to a company culture which expected consistently long hours.

Only a lack of career progression (65%) and a difficult boss (57%) were more likely to lead accountants to consider leaving their role.

Marcus Blackburn continues:

Work life balance is a growing priority for finance professionals and employers should consider this when developing a strategy for retaining high calibre staff long-term
While career progression and relationships with managers and colleagues can potentially have a larger impact, managers should not neglect the impact that a culture of long working hours can have on having a negative impact on staff retention