The Bottom Line:

HR managers reveal the crazy things employees have said to explain tardiness

The Full Story:

  • A new poll finds that 29% of workers say they’re late for work at least once a month, while 16% say they’re late at least once a week
  • 53% of employers expect employees to be on time, while 41% have fired people for their tardiness
  • The most common excuses for being late include traffic (49%), oversleeping (32%) and bad weather (26%), although some people have come up with crazy excuses and HR managers are sharing the most outrageous ones 

Let’s face it, not matter how hard some people try they will always be late to work. In fact, a new poll finds that 29% of workers say they’re late at least once a month, while 16% say they’re late at least once a week. 

As for whether being late for work is at all acceptable, that apparently depends. The survey finds that 53% of employers expect employees to be on time, while 41% have fired people for their tardiness. Meanwhile, 29% of employers are okay with occasional lateness as long as it isn’t habitual, while 18% don’t care as long as folks get their work done.

The most common excuses for being late include traffic (49%), oversleeping (32%) and bad weather (26%), but there are always some people who like to get creative when explaining the reason for their tardiness. CareerBuilder talked to over 2,600 human resource workers and 3,400 workers to find out the craziest excuses ever offered for being late, and there’s no doubt many wouldn’t fly in an office.

Most outrageous excuses for being late include:

  • I forgot it wasn't the weekend.
  • I put petroleum jelly in my eyes.
  • I had to watch a soccer game that was being played in Europe.
  • I thought Flag Day was a legal holiday.
  • My pet turtle needed to visit the exotic animal clinic.
  • The wind blew the deck off my house.
  • I overslept because my kids changed all the clocks in the house.
  • I was cornered by a moose.
  • My mother locked me in the closet.
  • The pizza I ordered was late being delivered, and I had to be home to accept/pay for it.
  • The sunrise was so beautiful that I had to stop and take it in.
  • My mother-in-law wouldn't stop talking.
  • My dad offered to make me a grilled cheese sandwich, and I couldn't say no. 

Source: CareerBuilder