A new study on work-life balance proves Austinites work harder than almost anyone else in the country.
Mobile technology company Kisi set out to determine which major U.S. cities offer the best work-life balance, and which ones could use an adjustment by examining work intensity, society and institutions, and livability. Overall, Austin ranks 10th-worst for work-life balance (No. 31 out of 40), but just as sobering is how overworked our residents are.
According to the study, Austin is one of the most overworked cities in the nation. Fifteen percent of Austin workers work at least 48 hours a week, the highest figure in the study, and, on average, the Austin workforce stays on the clock 43.5 hours a week, the third-longest in the country. Local workers arrive at work at 8:57 am but are on the road much earlier, commuting about 27 minutes just one way, the study says.
Austin falls toward the bottom of the list — No. 27 — for institutional and societal support. The city ranks low across the board, from healthcare and access to mental health to gender equality. However, Austin ranks higher than most cities for LGBTQ+ equality, at No. 19.
The Capital City redeems itself, though, for livability, No. 12, which takes into account overall happiness, safety, and access to wellness and leisure. This allowed Kisi to determine "whether their residents can enjoy their environment after office hours," the study says.
In general, the Lone Star State could stand to improve its work-life balance. Houston ranks lowest in Texas, at No. 37, and is the second-most overworked place in the nation. Dallas and San Antonio also rank in the bottom 10, Nos. 32 and 31, respectively.
Those who want to "work smarter rather than harder," says Kisi, should consider San Diego, California, which boasts the best work-life balance in the nation. Globally, that honor goes to Helsinki, Finland, which scores a perfect 100 in the report.