PAs to quit UK for shorter hours and less stress

Large numbers of personal assistants (PAs) are considering working abroad because of long hours, stress and lack of recognition, according to research.

A survey of 611 PAs and executive assistants, by recruitment firm OfficeTeam, reveals that 46% are tempted to move overseas.

Nearly one in 10 respondents claimed to be suffering ill health and stress owing to long hours and 15% feel guilty if they don’t work overtime.

More than a quarter (28%) of PAs say their overtime has increased over the past two years, and one in 10 now work more than 10 hours extra a week.

But despite their hard work and commitment, PAs aren’t receiving the recognition they deserve and they are still left at the company periphery.

A quarter are never invited to team meetings and 28% never have paid-for training to develop their skills.

Younger professionals were found to be the most likely to leave the UK, with nearly twice the number of under 30s (64%) tempted by the prospect of life overseas than those over 30 (38%.)

Phil Sheridan, UK district director of OfficeTeam, said: “PAs and executive assistants are working harder and harder to keep up with their bosses but are frequently not recognised for the value that they deliver.

“Their bosses and colleagues need to start appreciating the important role they play in the office and employers need to offer them the benefits and training they deserve. If the situation doesnÕt improve, good PAs could soon become few and far between as they jet off in search of a better deal.”

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