Working time

The subject of working time has been central to the work of the ILO since its inception, when it adopted the first of many international labour standards, the Hours of Work (Industry) Convention, 1919 (No.1). Some of the major challenges in this area remain those which have been important since the dawn of the industrial age: excessive hours of work and the need to protect workers’ health and safety by limiting working hours and providing adequate periods for rest and recuperation, including weekly rest and paid annual leave - which are enshrined in international labour standards. more...

Key publications

  1. Guide to developing balanced working time arrangements

    This guide or manual is designed to assist organizations, both private and public, to make informed decisions regarding how to structure working time arrangements in a “balanced” manner for the mutual benefit of both workers and enterprises.

  2. Conditions of Work and Employment Series No. 104

    Overtime work: A review of literature and initial empirical analysis

    Overtime is normally defined as working hours that are done in addition to normal (legislated) working hours during a day or a week. In many countries it may be compensated by overtime premium pay, which can play a role in worker remuneration.

  1. Working anytime, anywhere: The effects on the world of work

    This report considers the impact of telework/ICT-mobile work on the world of work. It synthesises research carried out by Eurofound’s network of European correspondents and ILO country experts.

  2. Decent working time: Balancing workers' needs with business requirements.

    Each dimension of working time improves work-life balance while simultaneously making enterprises more competitive.

  3. Offshoring and Working Conditions in Remote Work

    About the development of the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry in Argentina, Brazil, India and the Philippines.

Zoom on work-sharing

  1. Work Sharing during the Great Recession New Developments and Beyond

    This volume presents the concept and history of work sharing, how it can be used as a strategy for preserving jobs and also its potential for increasing employment, including the complexities and trade-offs involved.

  1. Policy Brief

    Work sharing: a strategy to preserve jobs during the global jobs crisis.

  2. Policy Brief

    New developments in work sharing in middle-income countries.

Working time in the XXIst Century

  1. 17 - 21 October 2011

    Tripartite Meeting of Experts on Working Time Arrangements

    This meeting was the first international policy discussion of working time issues in nearly 20 years. The purpose of the meeting was to review and advise on modern working-time arrangements, which includes identifying the main policy issues that would need to be addressed to develop future ILO guidance for advancing decent work in the area of working time.

  2. Discussion report

    Working time in the twenty-first century

    Analyses recent trends and developments relating to both the duration and organization of working time (contemporary trends, developments and effects with regard to different aspects of working-time organization such as hours of work and working-time schedules).

  3. Final report and Conclusions

    Final report and conclusions of the Tripartite Meeting of Experts on Working-time Arrangements