(CBS4) – A new well-researched study indicates that two of Colorado’s biggest cities are among the places where you’ll find the hardest working people in the country. Aurora and Denver are ranked in the Top 15 in a report published this week titled “2020’s Hardest-Working Cities in the U.S.”

A job fair in Denver (file photo credit: CBS)

The strong work ethic present in both cities landed Denver at No. 11 and Aurora at No. 12 on the list. Factors that WalletHub, the study’s author, took into account included the amount of hours people spent working each week and the employment rate. (Colorado’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate recently registered at its lowest level in at least 44 years.)

How much time people spend doing volunteer work and the amount of people with multiple jobs also factored in.

“American workers are increasingly working more than one job. Often this means two or three part-time jobs or a full-time job with a P-T job, which is now often in the “gig” economy (e.g., Uber),” said David R. Howell, an economics professor at The New School in New York and one of the experts consulted in the study.

Officials in Aurora at a meeting (file photo credit: CBS)

How much vacation time that doesn’t get used also played into the results. That and other signs point to the fact that some workers in the Denver metro area possibly aren’t attaining a very successful work-life balance.

“There is a mental and physical health epidemic spreading through the United States related to working too much and not taking breaks. Americans are renowned for failing to use their vacation time, and we’re known for working through illnesses. We are known for responding to work emails and phone calls while we are on vacation, which means that we’re not actually on vacation. This drives higher employee burnout rates, which has ruinous mental and physical health effects,” said Anthony R. Wheeler, a business professor at West Chester University of Pennsylvania and another study consultant.

RELATED: Denver Becomes First Colorado City To Set Its Own Minimum Wage

Anchorage, Alaska, was the No. 1 hardest working list, according to the survey.


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