Many of us are going through a big change in the day-to-day schedule as flexibility in working environments is becoming a much bigger focus – it has started with a major shift towards remote working, which has evolved for some as many individuals visit here for resources on the best ways to take advantage of this flexibility with travelling whilst working and living a digital nomad lifestyle. The latest trials taking place have been for a four-day working week, but is this something that can reliably change in business, or a passing fad that will fizzle out in time?
There have been a number of different trials for the four day working week already in different countries and different business types, with two notable approaches to do so – but for the most part the adjustment has been deemed as quite a large success with productivity and with employee satisfaction having both increased, but as these were shorter scale measures on a temporary basis the data isn’t yet there to suggest whether or not this could be as effective on a longer time scale.
The first approach has been to simply adjust the days worked by extending working hours throughout the week – rather than a standard 40-hour work week Monday through Friday, an additional two hours would be added to four of the workdays per week and would cut out one of the days. Whilst for some this isn’t the preferred approach, those that have made this change have reported the same increased satisfaction and productivity and has also allowed business to remain open full time by rotating members of staff through different days off four the fifth day of the week.
Another approach has been to cut hours, increase pay, and reduce to a complete four-day week although this has been the less popular of the two approaches and the approach that favors the employee more than the business as a whole. Cutting working hours down to a total of 32-hours per week does provide much more flexibility and satisfaction, it is unlikely that this option will become as widespread however but the few who have experienced this change have noted what a dramatic impact it makes and how much it changes work satisfaction.
With more companies in the UK particularly but also other countries around the world looking to trial both approaches, more information will become available on whether or not this is a potential future change for business as a whole and could go hand in hand with the remote working change to lead to a much more fulfilling work life balance for many.