Hackernoon logoHow Many Hours Per Day Do Programmers Actually Work? by@jure

How Many Hours Per Day Do Programmers Actually Work?

Jure Reljanović Hacker Noon profile picture

@jureJure Reljanović

Hi, my name is Jure Reljanović. I like learning about coding and technology and helping others by sharing my experience.

What do you think, how long do programmers actually work per day? Most people would say that the answer is 8-9 hours. Some say that they work 12 hours or more per day. While that is somewhere true, it’s not the amount that most programmers actually work, because you can’t consider browsing the web as working, right?

So, in this article, I am going to tell you how long do programmers actually work per day, and by working I don’t mean sitting on the table and browsing the internet. Also, I’ll try to explain why is that and which things influence how long is someone working. Let’s get started.

How Long Do Programmers Work

Most programmers work 8 hours a day, but in those 8 hours, you have a lunch break, team meeting, and then the work that needs to be done on a computer, which is coding, researching, and all the other things that go with that. That’s how things would work in the perfect world, but things aren’t always perfect. Let’s take a look at how things probably look for most of the programmers.

Most programmers start their day by drinking coffee and talking with their co-workers. After that’s done, depending on where your desk is located, you’ll probably spend some time just browsing the internet, reading news and so on. Then after you’ve done that you probably start preparing your development environment, and when you actually start to work, there comes the lunch break. Let’s say that after you’ve finished lunch it’s 1:00 pm. At that point, you probably stop for 20 minutes and then start actually working. You work for 2 hours, and then you need to go to the meeting. After meeting, its’ 4:00 pm. Now, most people start waiting for 5:00 pm, so that they can go home. And that’s probably how the day looks for at least 25% of all developers in the world.

What Determines How Long Programmers Work

There are a lot of factors that determine how long programmers actually work per day. The first factor is where the desk is located. If you work in a company that has parallel rows of let’s say 10 desks, everyone can you what you’re doing, so that makes it harder to not work and just browse the web. On the other hand, if you have your own office or you have some desk tucked in the corner, not a lot of people can see you if they aren’t specifically looking for you. If you are in that kind of situation, it’s very hard to be productive, because not a lot of people are forcing you.

The second factor is deadlines. If you have deadlines you’ll have to work more than if you didn’t have them. There are some jobs which have very straight deadlines which you need to meet and there are some jobs, where deadlines are a little bit more flexible.

The last factor that determines how long you actually need to work is your boss. If you have a boss that is relatively new and wasn’t been in the company from the beginnings, things will probably be a little easier. On the other hand, if you have a boss that is one of the founders or someone who has been in the company very long, things will be a little harder.

Why Programmers Don’t Work 8 Hours Per Day

Now, the question that is left is why programmers don’t work 8 hours per day? The answer to that primarily depends on motivation. If you are working for someone else on the project that you don’t particularly like, your motivation won’t be so high and you will probably spend more time browsing the web than working. On the other hand, if you have your own company, you’ll probably be working even more than 8 hours per day, because you want your company to succeed.


In conclusion, we can say that most of the programmers actually work between 2-4 hours per day. Of course, there are some that work more, but they are less common.

I hope that I have helped you with this article. If you liked this article, make sure to share it with your friends.

Also, if you think that I have missed something or you have any other questions, be sure to post your questions in the comments or send me an email at info@codequickie.com, I will be happy to answer them.


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