Should You Answer Work Calls After Office Hours?

Should You Answer Work Calls After Office Hours?
Share This Post

When my supervisor calls me at work, should I take it? Should I tell them I’m busy or let it go till tomorrow? What if I’m called to the boss’s office?

These are questions that frequently arise for many workers. Some employers assume their employees would answer personal calls during working hours, no matter how distracting it may be for others. Some businesses frown upon employees taking personal calls during work hours. Other people are certain that meetings take place outside of regular business hours.

As it is, there is no simple solution to this puzzle. While taking calls outside of normal business hours has some advantages, it also has drawbacks. You can expect punishment from your superior if you disregard their calls. But if you pick up the phone every time it rings, you can miss something crucial.

This piece will explain why some employers insist on after-hours accessibility and offer suggestions for dealing with this issue if you find yourself in such an employment situation.

Land More Interviews With A Professional Resume

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert

Is it ethical for employees to be contacted outside of work hours?

The short answer is yes. The long answer is a little more complicated. You should not hesitate to answer your employer’s call when they need to speak with you.

  • First, answering calls outside of work hours does not violate any laws. Most states have specific rules about what constitutes “working hours.” For example, California law defines these as between 8:00 am and 5:30 pm Monday through Friday. You must adhere to this definition if you work for a California company. However, work for a company based out of state. You should check with your local labor department to see whether they have similar regulations.
  • Second, answering calls outside of normal business times does not necessarily mean that you are being disrespectful. It could simply mean you are too busy to talk to someone. This is especially true if you are in the middle of a project.
  • Third, answering calls outside regular business hours can benefit both parties. You are showing respect to your superiors by answering your employer’s calls. They appreciate your willingness to help them whenever they need it. On the other hand, by picking up the phone, you demonstrate that you value your job enough to ensure you do not get distracted while performing your duties.
  • Fourth, answering calls outside of business hours can save you money. When you receive a call from your boss, you can either ignore it or answer it. If you choose to ignore it, you risk missing important information. If you decide to answer it, you can spend less time talking to your boss than if you were forced to wait until the next day.
  • Fifth, answering calls outside of standard business hours can improve productivity. Since you are not required to be available 24/7, you can use those extra hours to complete tasks that require your full attention.
  • Finally, answering calls outside of working hours can reduce stress levels. Even though you are not technically supposed to be working, you still have obligations to perform. If you cannot handle all of the things that come along with your job, consider taking advantage of the flexibility afforded to you by your employer.

The pros of answering work calls after office hours

If you answered your employer’s work calls after office hours, here are some benefits you would enjoy.

1. You will be able to avoid interruptions. When focusing on one task, it can be difficult to deal with multiple distractions. As long as you are not expected to respond immediately, you should be able to keep your concentration intact.

2. Your boss will think highly of you. When you pick up the phone and answer your boss’s calls, they will know that you are willing to put aside personal matters to help them. This shows that you care about your job and are dedicated to doing a good job.

3. You will be more productive. Since you will not be interrupted when trying to finish a task, you will be able to accomplish more in less time.

4. You will gain valuable experience. You will learn how to manage different situations by answering your employer’s calls. This will give you an edge over other employees who are not used to dealing with these problems.

5. You will earn additional income. Even though you are not officially paid for your overtime, you could make more money by answering your employer’s calls.

6. You will be able to avoid burnout. As long as you are not constantly responding to work calls, you will not become overwhelmed by the amount of work thrown at you.

7. You will be able to meet new people. You will probably get to interact with your co-workers while they are waiting for you to return their calls. By interacting with them, you can build relationships with people who are important to you.

The cons of answering work calls after office hours

There are also several drawbacks associated with answering work calls after office hours. Here are some disadvantages you need to be aware of if you start answering your employer’s calls after normal business hours.

1. It may look bad on your resume. Your supervisor may see you as unreliable because you always answer calls after office hours. This information will be included in your resume when you apply for a new position.

2. You may lose out on promotions. Many employers do not want to promote people who are seen as unreliable. If you are answering your employer’s calls after normal business days, you may be passed over for a promotion.

3. You may miss out on opportunities. You will likely receive fewer offers than someone else who does not answer their employer’s calls after normal business hours since many companies prefer to hire people who are available during regular business hours.

4. You may be labeled as a slacker. Some bosses may view you as lazy if you answer your employer’s calls after normal business hours, even though you only do so to complete your tasks.

5. You may have to pay extra for your cell phone plan. If you use your cell phone to answer your employer’s work calls, you will most likely have to pay more for your monthly service fees.

6. You may be viewed as unprofessional. Some believe it is inappropriate to answer their employer’s work call after normal business hours. They feel that it shows poor judgment and disrespect towards their boss.

7. Your productivity may suffer. When you answer your employer’s calls after normal business times, you will need help to focus on completing your tasks. As a result, you will accomplish less than what you would have done had you been working during normal business hours.

The ‘always available’ syndrome

In today’s world, many people are willing to work around the clock to keep their jobs. These individuals are known as “always available” workers.

These people are often willing to work late into the night and early morning hours. Still, they are unwilling to take advantage of other benefits of being an employee.

For example, these employees are unwilling to attend company meetings or participate in training sessions. In addition, they are reluctant to help with projects requiring additional hands.

This behavior can lead to problems within the workplace. Some managers may become frustrated when they can only contact their employees at some hours of the day. Other managers may begin to question whether their employees are reliable.

As a result, these managers may make decisions based solely on how much time their employees spend working rather than how well they perform their job duties.

Land More Interviews With A Professional Resume

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert


It’s common for employees to take business calls outside of regular business hours for various reasons. While some people may answer their employer’s calls after hours, many choose not to do so for multiple reasons.

Understanding the benefits and drawbacks of taking a work call outside of regular business hours is crucial before deciding whether or not to do so.

It can be challenging to tell when it’s OK to leave work at work and when it’s appropriate to carry it home with you. It may be time to establish some limits if you find that taking calls outside normal business hours disrupts your personal life.

Be sure to communicate your availability preferences to your manager or team. Our professional resume writers can help you if you need help answering a specific question or expressing yourself clearly in an email so that you don’t have to cram for assignments after hours.

Is Your Resume Working?

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert

Is your resume getting ignored?

Land more interviews and get hired faster with a professional resume written by career experts.


Resume + Cover Letter

$ 199
  • Professionally written resume - By experts that know your industry
  • Formatted for success - Formatting that will get an employer's attention.
  • Keyword optimized - Your resume will be optimized to pass through Applicant Tracking Systems.
  • Collaborate with writer - Work directly with your resume writer for a personalized experience
  • Cover Letter - Employers are 40% more likely to read a resume with a cover letter.

Contact Us

Contact us if you have any questions

Monday - Friday, (9am - 5pm EST)


Priority Support


(786) 474 - 6976