Long commutes make Koreans late, survey says

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Long commutes make Koreans late, survey says

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One out of three Korean workers are late to the office at least once a month, and among them, they are late an average of three days a month, according to a survey released Monday by Incruit.

According to the job information portal, many workers cited the distance between their home and work as the main reason for their tardiness, saying they would be willing to relocate closer if given the chance.

Thirty-one percent of the survey’s 521 employed respondents said they had been late in the last month alone, with 58 percent of them citing the distance of their commute.

Sixty-five percent of respondents said they would be willing to relocate, but those unable to cited more expensive housing and higher living expenses as the most common factors holding them back.

Seventy-six percent said their employers should adjust work hours based on where individuals live, while 30 percent said they would like their employer to delay the starting time across the board.

Thirty-two percent said employers should financially compensate those with long commutes.

Multiple answers were allowed.

The survey showed that the average Korean workplace starts the day before 9 a.m.

Forty-one percent of respondents said they have to be at work by 9 a.m., while 24 percent said they had to get there by 8:30 a.m.

Nine a.m. was the most desired starting time, according to respondents.

“We found out that workers who had to be at work between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. were the only people who were dissatisfied with their start time,” said Kim Dae-sun, a researcher at Incruit. “Most other workers didn’t seem to complain about their attendance time.”

By means of transportation, the subway was the most popular choice.

Twenty-eight percent said they ride the subway to work, followed by city bus (20 percent), personal vehicle (16 percent) and by foot (15 percent). Multiple answers were also allowed.

The survey also included 201 job seekers, many of whom said that commuting hours were less important than other factors when considering new positions.

Fifty-seven percent said salary or other benefits were the most important aspect of a prospective position, while only 20 percent cited commuting hours.

Nine percent said they would accept any job offered to them.


BY KIM YOUNG-NAM [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]

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