6/30/2014 - Traffic used as justification for tardiness
While workers may not go so far as to say they were late for work because of an accident that warranted an auto insurance claim, traffic is the most common excuse they point for arriving tardy at the office.
Performed by Harris Interactive on behalf of job search engine CareerBuilder, a recent survey revealed that approximately one in four individuals who work for a living admitted to clocking in at their workplace past the point they were scheduled to be there about once a week, on average. When respondents were asked the most common explanation for not being punctual, traffic was the one they most regularly used, followed by oversleeping, problems with public transportation, inclement weather and child-related responsibilities, such as dropping them off at daycare or school.
"Most employers understand that occasionally things pop up and cause employees to be behind schedule," said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder. "Employees who are often late should consider regularly checking the weather forecast for their commute, setting up alerts from any public transportation they use, or getting more done the night before so they're not rushed in the morning."
There are certain parts of the country where traffic congestion is particularly high, prompting workers to give themselves plenty of extra time so that they can be more punctual. At approximately 31 minutes going one way, Washington, D.C. area workers have the longest commute time nationwide, according to human resources solutions provider TriNet.
Though traffic jams may be the standard defense for why workers came in late, there are a number of fairly unusual ones that employees have resorted to. Some of these include a worker who left his home late because his cat got stuck in the toilet, someone who thought Halloween was a work holiday and a woman who was brushing her hair, only to get it stuck, the CareerBuilder survey found.