Our lifestyles have significantly changed over the past decade. We have gone from being a society expecting people to work all of the hours to get ahead in their careers, to realising that well-being and mental health can significantly impact performance. So what does this mean? While traditionally you would expect to work forty-plus hours each week to be successful, many employers have reported a positive impact on work rate when employees are given more flexible working arrangements.
There has been a lot of talk about a four-day week. This is where you would consulate your working hours into four days and then enjoy three rest days rather than the traditional weekend off. But is a four-day week feasible for your business? Let’s look at it in more detail.
The benefits of a four-day working week
Let’s start with some of the positives of a four-day working week. There will be benefits that will impact both your employees and your business. Here are some of the considerations to think about as a business:
Less sick days
Sickness absence costs businesses a lot of money. A longer rest period will help to reduce potential stress and mental health absences.
Reduce your carbon footprint
There is a lot of focus on businesses being more eco-friendly and a four-day week could help with that.
Cut running costs of your business
If you operate solely four days a week then this could significantly reduce your running costs the business. You gain an extra day where power will be reduced and other costs that you may incur during the business day.
Happier employees mean a more productive workforce
If you have happier employees then you are likely to get more efficiency out of them during their working days, which is better for you as a business.
Increased retention of staff
As your staff will feel valued, you are more likely to retain staff in positions rather than lose them to other businesses providing flexible working options.
What about your employees?
There will also be some benefits for your employees. These include:
Better work and home life balance
If they feel like they are getting more downtime then this can help them to improve their home and work-life balance.
Help your employees financially
A four-day week could also help your employees financially. There won’t be any increase in wage, but they may be able to reduce their childcare and transport costs.
More productive and feeling valued
If they feel valued as individuals then you an employee will be more productive in the hours they do work.
Are there any downsides?
There are of course other considerations to make when it comes to a four-day working week. You need to think about whether your business could function with a four-day workforce. Or whether a shift pattern will need to be introduced to ensure a seven-day operation. Having the right support from leadership and the technology to support the move will also be important.
Is a four-day week is feasible for your business?