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'Who left their T4 on the office photocopier?'

Survey: One Third of Workers Say It's Common for Employees to Use Company Resources for Personal Tax Prep

TORONTO, April 9, 2014 /CNW/ - As the tax deadline day approaches, people will be lining up at the post office to send off their income tax returns, but there might be a line at the office printer, too, suggests a new survey by Accountemps. Thirty-two per cent of workers interviewed said it's common for employees to use company resources like the copier or printer to complete their personal income tax paperwork. Furthermore, 22 per cent of workers also said it's common for employees to spend time on personal income tax preparation during working hours.

The survey was developed by Accountemps, the world's first and largest specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals, and conducted by an independent research firm. It includes responses from 281 Canadian employees 18 years of age and older who work in an office environment.

Workers were asked, "In your opinion, how common is it for employees at your firm to use company resources (e.g., copier, printer, scanner, mailroom) to complete personal income tax paperwork?" Their responses:

Very common  8%
Somewhat common 24%
Somewhat uncommon 29%
Not common at all 40%

*Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding.

Workers also were asked, "In your opinion, how common is it for employees at your firm to spend time on personal income tax preparation (e.g., printing paperwork, filling out forms, talking to their accountant) during work hours?" Their responses:

Very common  6%
Somewhat common 16%
Somewhat uncommon 27%
Not common at all 51%

"Though there has been a noticeable overlap, in recent years, between personal and work hours, it's never a good idea to use company resources for personal purposes like preparing taxes," said Dianne Hunnam-Jones, Canadian district president of Accountemps. "Beyond the issue of 'time-theft,' there is a risk associated with having personal financial documents floating around the office or stored on a copier's hard drive."

Hunnam-Jones added, "Some personal errands may have to be done during business hours, and those should be handled during lunch breaks, but employees must be careful not to go overboard and let productivity suffer because of last-minute tax scrambling."

About Accountemps
Accountemps, a Robert Half company, is the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals. The staffing firm has 345 locations worldwide. Follow Accountemps at twitter.com/RobertHalf_CAN for workplace news.


SOURCE Accountemps

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