The Four-Day Work Week Trial Has Been Successful


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The Four-Day Work Week Trial Has Been Successful

Rozz Cottrell
September 22, 2022
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In June, we wrote about the four-day work week trial currently taking place this year (June - November) across 70 companies. As it is now coming to the end of September, we wanted to explore how the trial is going, and whether it has been successful.

According to Bloomberg UK, the results are, so far, largely positive. Increasing productivity was a reason we identified a four-day workweek as beneficial to the workplace, and the results show that 49% of the companies involved have stated that productivity has improved, whereas 46% said it has remained stable. These numbers are encouraging after the initial three months, and they demonstrate that, in a number of scenarios, reducing working hours may increase employee productivity.

Another pilot of the four-day work week that happened across 2015-2019 in Iceland saw a dramatic increase in employee well-being. This must be prioritised by companies, especially considering the economic difficulties for many people in the UK currently. Increased productivity goes naturally alongside employee wellbeing, and you can’t have one without the other.

Work-life balance is another compelling reason to consider the four-day week, and this is something those taking part in the trial have regarded as important. As recorded by the Guardian, a worker stated that ‘an extra day off on Friday is a dream come true’. Work-life balance has an undeniable relationship to employee wellbeing, another benefit of this approach.

There have been some drawbacks, such as schedules needing to be planned more effectively and precisely, and some small companies have struggled with the change than bigger organisations.

Despite this, 88% of the leaders in participating organisations reported that the trial is going well. Changes have been able to be implemented with little issue, which suggests that so far, it is mostly a success.

This trial may just see many companies shifting to the four-day week from November onwards, which could persuade others who did not take part in the trial to follow suit.

In November, we will follow with more updates on the success of this six-month trial.

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