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4 Day Work Week




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A four day work week is reduced working hours. So employees will work around 28 hours over four days and have a three-day weekend. Microsoft Japan tested the concept and gave all Fridays in August 2019 as "special paid leave" for its employees. The trial boosted productivity by 40% and resulted in more efficient work.

On July 27, Workers’ Party Member of Parliament Louis Chua (Sengkang GRC) wrote in his Facebook post that the four-day work week can be a pragmatic policy consideration, and this has already been tried and tested by companies and countries worldwide, such as Iceland for example. If we adopt a shorter work week with the right mindset, the benefits of better mental health, productivity, and agency felt on the individual level, will translate to society-wide benefits.

  • Increased productivity
  • A large New Zealand business, Perpetual Guardian, trialled a four-day work week and found not only a 20% rise in productivity, but work-life balance scores increased from 54% to 78%. Employees spend less time for work, it results in feeling happier because they get more time to spend with family and friends, more relaxing days, time to do their hobbies and even studying to get another degree.

  • Environmental impact and less cost
  • For workers who don’t work remotely and have to commute everyday to work, working 4 days a week has a good impact on the environment. Less people commute means less carbon footprint. Also workers can save money if they commute less. Fewer overhead costs. Companies spend most of their monthly fixed cost for electricity. If all employees are out of the office one day a week, it can reduce electricity bills. This may not apply for companies who rent coworking space as their office.

  • More efficient usage of time
  • Employees who work 4 days a week know very well that they don’t have much time to spend on unnecessary activities such as frequent meetings, chatting with colleagues, excessive breaks and so on.

  • Employee satisfaction
  • Having 3 days off means employees can have work-life balance. Read about work-life balance here . Work-life balance makes employees feel satisfied. Satisfied employees are less likely to leave their employer so it means the company will also have lower turnover. Win-win situation.

There are many benefits of a 4 day work week from having work-life balance, increased productivity to low turnover. But remember, not all industries can implement this for example if you work in customer service and the health sector like hospitals that requires employees to work in shifts for 24/7 schedule.

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