Think most employees can truly stay away from the office while on summer vacation?

Think again.

Slightly more than half of the 2,212 U.S. adults responding to an online Harris Interactive poll expect to be working while on vacation this year. This is up by 6 percentage points from a similar survey of 3,304 U.S. adults released last year by Adweek/Harris Poll.

The upshot is that with more Americans expecting to work this year, vacations are becoming less relaxing, according to the researchers, who sought to determine American attitudes and behavior toward working during their summer vacations.

“The study shows that although vacation is a time for relaxing, many Americans are never completely away from their jobs,” says Holger Felgner, TeamViewer’s general manager. “This growing trend demonstrates the hard work ethic Americans have, along with an increasing ability to stay connected with advances in technology.”

Of those surveyed in May for TeamViewer, an online meetings and remote-control software provider, 1,309 reported that they were worked full-time, part-time and/or self-employed. They expect to perform a variety of work-related tasks during their breaks that include:

  • Reading work-related e-mails – 30%.
  • Receiving work-related phone calls – 23%.
  • Wanting access to a document on my home computer – 19%.
  • Receiving work-related text messages – 18%.
  • Wanting access to a document on their work computer – 13%.
  • Being asked to do work by a boss, client or colleague – 13%. 

Interestingly, employed men in particular were more likely to say they plan to work during their summer vacation this year than employed women (56% versus 47%), and employed Americans living in the West, as opposed to those living in the South, are more likely to say they’ll plan to read work-related e-mails (39% vs. 25%) during their summer vacation. Additionally, employed single Americans expect to be asked to do work by a boss, client or colleague more often than married Americans (15% versus 6%).
 “With an increasing number of employees staying connected during their vacation, efficient tools are more important than ever before,” said Felgner, whose firm’s services are available in more than 30 languages. 

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