The 4-day working week

This week (6th June) saw the start of the 4-day working week trial. 

Over 70 companies and 3000 employees started the trial which is set to last for 6 months on Monday 6th June. The trial consists of employees working 80% of their week for 100% of their pay, providing they still commit to 100% productivity. 

Researchers will be working with the companies to understand the impact on productivity and wellbeing of all employees participating. They will also be looking at any changes to inclusivity, equality and working environment for those included. 

The world has changed significantly over the last few years and with this trial the UK is part of a huge global movement to consider how to address the work-life balance employees are asking for. The great resignation has created a need for businesses to look at a wider scope of options to help retain more talent than ever before. 

With the potential to help reduce burnout, ease the cost-of-living impacts, and support social responsibility for climate change, the 4-day week is a serious consideration for many companies.

Whilst this won’t be preferable for everyone or every business it will be great to understand the findings to see how others can offer this as a part of their flexible options. 

There has been quite a shift to output focus rather than hours worked, I know many who can put in a 40-hour week and achieve as little as possible. Obviously for some industries there is a requirement to cover serviceable hours for clients, those in leisure, retail, and hospitality that this may offer some challenges to, it’s all about finding what’s right fit for your business. 

Having a range of flexible offers can have a positive impact on employees and business performance. My advice would be to approach flexibility with an open mind, it’s about working smarter, not harder.