Pros and Cons of the 4 Day Work Week 👇
Pssst... 4 day work week = 32hrs with no drop in salary
📈 Pros and Cons for the Company
There are many ways 4 day week companies can save on operating costs, such as:
- Lower utility bills: shut the office 1 day / week = heating & electrical costs drop by 10-20%.
- Smaller office needed: 4-day week + employees off different days + hot-desking = smaller office.
- Cheaper recruitment: 95%+ of people want a 4 day week, but only ~1% of companies offer it. In other words... watch great candidates come to you.
- Lower turnover costs: with a 4 day work week, employees retention skyrockets. Put simply:
Once you go to a four-day work week, you don’t go back.
- Decreased ambsenteeism: when staff are healthier, they are off sick less.
- Lower costs for on-site perks: costs to pay for free meals, on-site gyms & childcare drop by 20%.
Better job applicants
And let's just say that it attracts candidates who... normally wouldn't apply 😇
Increased employee retention
Happier staff = longer employment
Our retention of staff increased from 80% to 98%.
Better for gender equality
Here's how a 4 day week is a win for gender equality:
- Reduces Gender pay gap: Women often take a pay cut when getting a part-time job, due to caregiving. Reimagining full time work as a four-day work week levels the playing field for women.
- Balanced Caring Responsibilities: when 3k people trialed a 4 day week in the UK, men spent 27% more time looking after children, vs 13% for women.
- Better for single parents: Childcare can be a massive expensive for single parents. A 4 day week drops this by at least 20%.
It's a simple concept: healthier staff & lower burnout = less sick days.
Absenteeism dropped by 67% when 3k employees switched to a 4 day work week.
Increased diversity & inclusivity
Put simply, flexibility creates a more diverse & inclusive workplace:
- Attracts a Broader Range of Candidates: people with family obligations, health problems etc often can't commit to a traditional 5 day week schedule.
- Better for those with Disabilities: flexibility = inclusivity e.g. employees with disabilities may find a traditional work schedule challenging.
- Supports Continuing Education: an day off makes it easier for staff to pursue further education, which can increase diversity - especially in roles where certain groups are underrepresented.
Increased Innovation & Creativity
Well-rested employees = increased creativity.
Creativity needs space. Creativity needs downtime. You're not always going to be at your most creative when you're sat in front of a computer.
More time for employees to upskill
The extra day could be used for employees to enhance their skills e.g. by taking courses, getting professional certification, hobbies etc.
Productivity needs to increase by 25%
KPIs are obviously the biggest concern when switching to a shorter work week.
To avoid the business suffering, productivity needs to increase by 25% - to account for the lost day.
How is this possible I hear you ask... Well, the phenomenon of Parkinson's Law means that we naturally work faster when less time is made available.
It's no surprise to me that when staff get 50% more time off, they work much more productively.
It can't be applied in some areas / industries
Yes, the 4 day work is certainly more challenging to implement in some situations vs others e.g. customer support needs to be available 5 days / week.
But it doesn't mean there is no hope - we just have to be more creative.
e.g. for customer facing roles: companies usually split teams into different shifts: Mon-Thu and Tue-Fri.
We have the productive and technological capacity for the four-day week to replace the five-day week as the ‘new normal’, and for some version of work time reduction to be achieved across all sectors of the economy.
❤️ Pros and Cons for the Employee
Staff Sleep More
More free time = more recovery time.
During a recent 4 day week trial, staff slept 16% more on average, vs when they worked 5 days week.
Staff Exercise More
In a recent study, physical exercise increased by ~21%, vs when they worked a 5 day week.
Staff are Happier
We are stating the obvious here.
Better Work-life Balance
We are also stating the obvious here.
Better for Part Timers
When full-time work is reimagined as a 4 day week - the playing field is levelled. Working part time hours becomes less of a disadvantage for career progression.
It's not for everyone
It's true - not everyone loves a shorter workweek. As studies has shown, the days are more intense - and some people prefer a slower paced, more relaxed 5 day week to get their work done.
Around 8% of people prefer to work 5 days per week instead of 4.
🌍 Pros and Cons for the World
Reduced Traffic Congestion
A 4 day week means 20% less workplace traffic.
Better for the EnvironmentMore info...
Reduced Healthcare Pressure
A healthier society = lower burden to public services.
More Time to Volunteer
A win for society.
Supports Aging Population
More time = better support for the elderly.
Increased Parental Involvement
More time = more engaged parents.
Boost to Local Economy
More leisure time = more local spending.