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States that Offer the Best Work-Life Balance

  • Massachusetts has the best work-life balance of any state, with a score of 60.29 out of 100

  • Washington and California rank second and third, scoring 58.32 and 55.71, respectively.

  • Mississippi was found to have the worst work-life balance, scoring just 0.19



Work-Life balance is becoming increasingly important in today’s world, and a new study has revealed which states have the best and worst balances, with Massachusetts topping the list.


The study, by AI productivity platform Plus Docs, analyzed Bureau of Labor Statistics data and looked at the average weekly hours worked, as well as average weekly earnings, in order to give each state an index score out of 100 for how good – or bad – of a work/life balance they have.


Massachusetts takes the top spot on the list, with a work-life balance score of 60.29 out of 100. With the highest average weekly income ($1,329.02 per week) and, as a result, the highest average hourly wages ($39.32 per hour), the people of Massachusetts were found to be among the states with the lowest average weekly hours worked, only working on average 33.8 hours per week.


In second place is Washington, with a work-life balance score of 58.32 out of 100. Seeing the second-highest average weekly wage of any state at $1,313.70, Washington also ranks second only to Massachusetts in terms of average hourly wage, with an average hourly wage of $37.75. The people of Washington were found to only work 34.8 hours per week on average, equating to just 6 hours and 57 minutes per day over a standard 5-day work week.


Third place on the list goes to California, with a work-life balance score of 55.71. Californians were found to work 34.8 hours per week on average, bringing home an average weekly wage of $1,291.68 – or $37.44 per hour, only slightly behind Washington’s average hourly wage of $37.75.


New York takes the fourth spot on the list, with a work-life balance score of 43.98 out of 100. Notably, New York sees the third-lowest weekly hours worked on average, at only 33.3 – tied with Wisconsin and Hawaii, and third only to Montana with 32.9 hours and Delaware with 33 hours worked per week on average, respectively. New Yorkers were found to take home $1,192.81 per week on average, equating to an hourly wage of $35.82.


In fifth place is Alaska, with a work-life balance score of 42.21 out of 100. Alaskans were found to work 35 hours per week on average, working out to 7 hours a day over the standard 5-day work week. The average hourly wage of an Alaskan was $33.71 – working out to earning $1,179.85 per week.


The remainder of the top ten features Minnesota in at sixth place, with a work-life balance score of 41.44 out of 100, and Connecticut extremely close behind in seventh place, scoring 41.40 out of 100.


Maryland is in eighth, with a work-life balance score of 39.21 out of 100, while New Jersey takes the ninth spot with a score of 38.79 out of 100.


Rounding out the list in tenth place is Colorado, with a work-life balance score of 38.58 out of 100.


Interestingly, across all states, the average person was found to work 34.25 hours per week – working out to just under 7 hours (6 hours 51 minutes) a day for a 5-day work week. The average hourly pay was also found to be $30.53, working out to an average weekly wage of $1,044.91.


Mississippi was found to be the state with the worst work/life balance, only scoring 0.19 out of 100. In Mississippi, the average person worked 34.6 hours a week and only earned $829.71 per week – working out to just $23.98 per hour.


Daniel Li, CEO and co-founder of Plus Docs commented on the findings, saying:


“The study highlights significant variations in work/life balance across different U.S. states. Massachusetts takes the lead with a notably high index score, showing a fine balance between working hours and earnings.”


“In contrast, at the lower end of the spectrum, Mississippi indicates a distinct pattern with lower weekly wages and a relatively higher number of weekly hours worked. These findings underscore states' diverse approaches in managing the delicate balance between professional commitments and personal time.”


 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Methodology: Data from 2022 was scraped from the Bureau of Labor Statistics source. Data was then normalized using a min-max formula, with hours worked being inversely normalized to result in lower hours worked scoring higher. The resulting normalized scores were then multiplied by weightings, giving each state an index score out of 100.

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