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4 Day Work Week

In this blog I will be reflecting on an article I read. A 4 day work week was tested by Microsoft Japan during the summer of 2019 where employees were working 4 days a week with a 3 day weekend for the same paycheck.The company claims that their productivity increased by 40%.

The reduction in working hours had effects on other aspects of their workplace.The impacts were positive and more efficient for the company.

Four day work week became popular in 2018 when New Zealand trust management company said their productivity increased by 20% and employee work life balance increased by 45%. In October 2018 the company made the policy permanent.Only a few companies had experimented the 4 day workweek, still companies around the world have not tried it yet.

In the article work place analyst and author Dan Schawbel has lent his insights about the policy and says for now employees are focusing on a common benefit : “Flexibility”. He says “Younger people are choosing work flexibility over health care coverage, even though that expense in America is pretty high”. He also talks about this flexibility in Europe and how there are strong work life balance laws. While writing this I am thinking about my flexibility of working from home until and unless I get fully vaccinated or I am in need at my workplace.

It is not that the employees do not want to work. There was a survey conducted in 2018 which questioned people “If your pay is constant, how many days a week do you want to work?” and the results are that, 4% chose “None”, 34% chose 4 day workweek, 28% supported the standard 5 day workweek and 20% chose to work 3 days per week. The biggest portion of people say they do want to work.

I would conclude by saying that companies should experiment with this policy at one of their location to start with and then take it forward with other locations if they feel it is efficient. Other companies then shall follow the trend. When we have concrete data showing the increase in productivity and the improvement of work life balance in employees, I would say the 4 day work week IS NOT FAR AWAY.

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