Print your CV off at work for a pay raise

Abigail Fenton
·3 min read
Many employees use office printers to print off personal documents. Photo: Getty

Thousands of Brits are frantically printing out their CVs in a bid to secure a new job – at the expense of their current employer, a study reveals.

A survey 2,500 office workers by printer firm Cartridge Save found half of office workers print off their CV right under the noses of their boss using the office printer while job hunting.

And it’s not just once or twice, with more than one in four (28%) revealing they frequently use the office printer when looking for a new job.

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But while one in three (30%) have been caught out for printer misuse – a quarter (26%) said getting caught printing off their CV or a new job application led to a pay rise.

The survey found half of office workers (54%) around the UK use their employer’s printer ink because they don’t own a printer.

After CVs, the most common item for printer misuse was for travel tickets – with 45% admitting they use an office printer for holiday admin.

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A quarter (24%) of those printing out their work records do so during a lunch break, while one in 10 (11%) leave printer misuse until the boss is in a meeting.

And one in five (18%) said they do so to get back at their boss.

And it could be a daily occurence, with 38% of office workers admitting they print personal items off up to five times a week.

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Common items printed off in office time – and at a cost to their employers – are gig tickets (42%) interview documents (38%) and photographs (16%).

Cartridge Save estimates that on average this kind of personal use of printers could cost employers £85 ($111) per person per year.

Multiplied by an average of 50 employees for a medium-sized business could cost upwards of £4,292.

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A third (35%) of survey respondents said they had been reprimanded or fired by bosses for printer misuse.

Many also revealed mishaps. Several claimed they had caught a colleague or boss photocopying body parts, while one said he had caught a peer printing off an erotic novel.

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Ian Cowley, MD of Cartridge Save said: “It has been an unwritten rule in lots of businesses for a number of years now that employees use the printer. Most bosses do tend to turn a blind eye – but it is worth adding up that cost to the business. It could equate to staff bonuses, a pay rise or an office social.

“Equally it is easy to see why office workers do take advantage of the office printer. It’s convenient and obviously not at a cost to them.”