More and more buzz is being generated around the idea of the 4-day workweek. A lot of good questions arise at the thought of companies allowing employees to only work four days. You might wonder if the company revenue will suffer. Or how it will affect worker productivity. More and more technology is changing the way we work. Remote work is more popular than ever before and will continue to gain traction. In the construction industry, where crews are working long and physically draining days, a four day work week can make sense. In this article, we'll explore the benefits of the 4-day workweek, and even look at some of the possible drawbacks.
A Sanford University study revealed that overworked employees are actually less productive than employees working an average workweek. In New Zealand, a company called Perpetual Guardian conducted a trial study of a four day work week. Not only did employees maintain the same productivity level, but they showed improvements in job satisfaction, teamwork, work/life balance, and company loyalty. Employees reported a decrease in stress levels too.
Increased Employee Engagement
Four day work weeks can lead to happier and more committed employees. Employees are less likely to be stressed or take sick leave with the extra time to recover. When they do return to work after a three-day break, they're more energized and ready to work productively.
One concern with a four day work week is customer satisfaction. Utah abandoned their four day work week experiment in 2011 after residents complained they were unable to access services on Friday. However, using technology, like chatbots and AI-powered websites, customer satisfaction can increase with 24/7 support that does not rely on staff members. This doesn't always work, but providing support 24/7 is better than only five days per week. The level of support does change a bit, though. More complex questions can sometimes only be fielded by humans.
What are the Disadvantages to a 4 Day Workweek?
While there are benefits to a four day work week, there are disadvantages as well. Implementing a four day work week can be difficult without the right support, technology and workplace culture can be a challenge. Some companies can pull it off by staggering their scheduling. Some employees may have Monday off, while others take Friday off. Some companies can operate seven days a week, with employees working only four days. Then there's the question of hours. If employees are paid on an hourly salary, many will want to work four ten-hour shifts to get full-time status and benefits.
Is a 4 Day Workweek Right for Your Business?
Like everything, it depends. You'll need to take into consideration the type of industry you're in, the number of staff, and what kind of technology you can use to fill any customer service voids. Companies with large staff and the right technology can make it work. Others will be better off sticking to the traditional five day work week.