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Aside from having spent five hours at happy hour the previous day, waking up late, getting dressed like a mad woman and rushing to the car or train that inevitably is running 15 minutes behind; there are scientific findings that suggest the work day should begin at a time later than 8:00 am, or even 9:00 am.

MUST READ: Tell Your Boss: There Are Many Glorious Benefits To A Shorter Work Week

Most employees would recommend a later work start time to employers, if at all possible. However, there are other factors, outside of wanting additional time to rest, that have to be considered when employers make a determination on when to require employees to be at their desks. Market times of other countries, school schedules and standard work hours within your industry all play a part on when employees and employers actually make it into the office.

A recent study by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine found that “ interventions to increase sleep time should concentrate on delaying the morning start time of work and educational activities (or making them more flexible), increasing sleep opportunities, and shortening morning and evening commute times.” The results were based upon the analyses of 124,517 American adults on their sleep and work habits, as recorded in the American Time Use Surveys from 2003 to 2011. Lead study author Dr. Mathias Basner of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and colleagues determined a link between earlier starting times for work or school and less time spent sleeping.

“Results show that with every hour that work or educational training started later in the morning, sleep time increased by approximately 20 minutes,” explains the study. “Respondents slept an average of only 6 hours when starting work before or at 6 a.m. and 7:29 hours when starting work between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.” Reducing the need for multiple jobs may increase sleep time, but economic disincentives from working fewer hours will need to be offset. Raising awareness of the importance of sufficient sleep for health and safety may be necessary to positively influence discretionary behaviors that reduce sleep time, including television viewing and morning grooming.

What do you think?

Will a later work start time cause you to rest longer, or just use that time to tackle other responsibilities?

Rashida Maples, Esq. is Founder and Managing Partner of J. Maples & Associates. She has practiced Entertainment, Real Estate and Small Business Law for 10 years, handling both transactional and litigation matters. Her clients include R&B Artists Bilal and Olivia, NFL Superstar Ray Lewis, Fashion Powerhouse Harlem’s Fashion Row and Hirschfeld Properties, LLC.

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