Is a 4-day week productive?

Is a 4-day week productive?

Introduction

Across the globe there have been calls from different parties and organisations calling out for a change in the working week, making the standard 5-day week a 4-day working week. In some places across the world, they have already implemented this, so today we are going to look at the pros and cons of a 4-day working week.

Pros

1. Increased Productivity – It’s no secret that overworked employees are less productive. The stress and lack of job satisfaction in working long and hard hours can lead to less productivity and employees feeling they have no work/life balance. It is scientifically proven that stressed employees can see a decrease also in their productivity. So, working 4 days a week, and having a 3-day week can mean that employees may get even more work done than working 5 full days.

2. Family Friendly – Working parents or carers can find it hard to commit to 5 full working days. This means a lot of people with amazing skills who are out doing the school run or that need to care for a relative first thing in the morning or afternoon cannot work, as they cannot find flexible days and hours. This means the worker and businesses can miss out on employees with amazing key skills. By implanting a 4-day week, these people may find it easier to work and put back into the economy and cater for their personal commitments.

3. Less sickness and time off – Studies done in Norway in the Nursing career showed that nurses that were working 6-hour days instead of longer hours, had less days off sick and were more productive when at work. By working less hours, it gave back more hours they were there working and caring for patients.

Cons

1. Customer Satisfaction – In today’s day and age customers expect an answer or to be able to buy what they need there and then. If offices are closed on a certain day, this can lead to customers becoming disgruntled as they want the help when they need the help and do not want to reach a closed office. This can lead to customer satisfaction dropping significantly.

2. It doesn’t suit every business model – Not all businesses can run on a 4-day working week and need staff that can be there 5 or even 6 days a week. If the working day is reduced that can mean 10-hour long shifts to still bring in the income people need as wages are not going to be high enough to live on, so this then takes the Pro of increased productivity off the table.

3. Expensive for a business to implement – It can be very difficult to change the structure of a business, including contracts, structures, policies, and legal terms needing revising. It can affect practices and how things are done, that can work out costly for a business and not many businesses can afford this is the hard times we have found ourselves in lately.

Conclusion

In an ideal work of course a 4-day working week in our opinion sounds like an amazing thing to help many people, but as we can see from the cons, that there would be equally many downfalls with this idea as well as pros. It really does depend on the business model and structure.

Every company is different and we think it needs to be reviewed on an individual basis.

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