Research: Lawyers take just 36 minutes for their lunch

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By Thomas Connelly on

And close to half rarely leave the office to eat

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The average lawyer takes just over half an hour for their lunch break, according to new research published this week.

The findings, produced by flexible workspace specialist Workthere, suggest that “legal sector” workers will spend on average just 36 minutes unwinding at lunch. With close to half of lawyers questioned (44%) “rarely” venturing out of the office in search of sustenance, 18% admitted to researchers that they felt under pressure to work through their midday break.

Moreover, the study — which questioned 2,000 full time UK workers across a range of industry sectors — revealed that lawyers eat lunch at their desk on average four days a week. Interestingly, over a quarter of lawyers surveyed (28%) said that access to an outside space at lunch would make them more productive, while 32% told researchers that a quiet escape area in the office would improve their downtime.

So how does law compare to other professions? Well, not that badly. Finance workers on average take 36 minutes (matching the legal professionals), while those working in human resources are clocking up 34 minutes (two minutes fewer than lawyers).

More generally, 34% of those surveyed take a lunch break of 21 to 30 minutes, while 13% take just 20 minutes or less. Over half of respondents (52%) said they skipped lunch altogether.

It would appear your location also affects your lunchtime habits. Londoners are the most likely to skip lunch altogether, closely followed by Birmingham, Manchester and Norwich.

Commenting on the findings, founder and head of Workthere Cal Lee said:

We have seen wellness establish itself firmly on the workplace agenda with employers in the legal sector increasingly recognising the benefits of ensuring staff are content, happy and most importantly, in good health. Part of this is creating a productive office environment where employees feel comfortable taking a longer lunch break and engaging with colleagues.

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