Excerpted from What Millennials Want from Work by Jennifer Deal and Alec Levenson (January, 2016)

We found that Millennials in our study work really hard: 56 percent work more than 9 hours a day, and 33 percent work more than 10 hours a day (the same is true for those older than Millennials). We were told stories about Millennials working so many hours that they used their homes as large closets—basically going home to shower, maybe sleep for a couple of hours, and change clothes before going straight back to work. Many Millennials talked about regularly working past 11 p.m. in the office when they were on deadlines or their organizations were experiencing particularly busy periods.

The primary reason most work these hours is that their workloads are heavier than they can possibly get done in a normal work day.

As a result, a large percentage of Millennials feel overloaded at work:

  • 42 percent say they can’t get everything done on their job.
  • 36 percent don’t think the amount of work they’re being asked to do is reasonable.
  • 27 percent believe that because of the workload, they cannot possibly do their work well.

While these were all Millennials in professional, managerial, and executive roles, they weren’t all in the technology industry, which has a reputation for Millennials practically living in the office; these were Millennials in consulting, law, banking, consumer goods, and medicine as well.

Work for Millennials doesn’t end when they leave the office. Ninety-one percent say they are contacted outside of work hours: 67 percent at least once a week, 12 percent every day. Four out of five Millennials say they read work-related e-mails on their smartphones, and more than a third do so on smartphones they pay for themselves. Millennials who are higher in an organization were more likely to be contacted outside of work hours, with a quarter of those at the highest level reporting that they were contacted every day.

So regardless of how many hours Millennials have worked in the office, they do more when they get home. Millennials don’t expect work to stop when they leave the office. They have come of age at a time when the mobile workplace is a reality and there is no real “off” time.