Businesses around the world are going through a vast economic crisis that has resulted in enabling organizations to rethink the way they run their operations. The experts think that this pandemic situation can actually transform and open new avenues for business. To be specific, it has already begun to change with the shift to a remote work environment.
We are sure that even your organization may have realized that for some roles, this remote work or work from home environment is extremely feasible, and you may want to make it continue the same even after the pandemic. Similarly, another major change that has been the talk of the town is a four-day workweek.
It has been garnering a lot of attention lately, but according to the industry leaders, this may be an appropriate time to make this shift. Employees have been juggling around to take care of their family and complete their work assignments effectively, battling these interruptions. Making a shift to a four-day workweek will give employees an ample amount of time to address their personal responsibilities and return back to work to be more productive.
Flexible, Not A Compressed Schedule
Now, if you think that a four-day workweek will still consist of 38 – 40 working hours, then let us put it straight – this will only result in increasing the burden rather than relieving them of it! An ideal four-day workweek, for the full-timers of the organization, should be 30 hours of work instead of 40.
In case you consider compressing the working hour to four days, then it may be difficult for you to see an increase in the productivity of your employees. Why? Here are two key reasons:
- Employees are struggling to be available and take care of their children in the absence of daycares and schools. A compressed work schedule will only make it even more, worse, as it will be painful for them to concentrate further, deriving lower productivity.
- Due to the economic distress surfacing around the industries, many companies are trying to downsize their teams, which is giving rise to a high unemployment rate. If needed, you can hire more people to accomplish your goals within the deadlines as you now have access to a large pool of talent.
Pros Of A Four-Day Work Week
- Better Productivity
With the less number of working hours, employees tend to be more productive and compensate for the fifth day of work. A study reveals that the overall productivity of employees increased when they worked for only 25 – 30 hours per week rather than the 40-hour workweek. Due to the limited amount of time, they tend to be more focused and plan to utilize it smartly to reach their deadlines.
- Increased Employee Engagement
Four-day work week enables employees to gain a better work-life balance making them happier and satisfied. This motivates them to be more engaged in their work and ready to take up new challenges.
Cons Of A Four-Day Work Week
- Mistaken Approach
As mentioned earlier in this blog, if you adopt a four-day workweek without reducing the number of working hours from 40 to 30, it will adversely affect the schedule and productivity of your employees. It can greatly impact the work-life balance and hamper the focus.
- Missing Deadlines
This five-day to four-day working week is not going to be a cakewalk for sure. You may have to make a lot of alterations in your schedules, which may cause a disturbance in your project timelines. As a result, you may experience missing the deadlines.
Should You Make This Shift?
Honestly, the answer totally depends on your business and employee needs. Before making a permanent shift, you may want to experiment with different departments, levels or employees and see how it turns out for your organization.
Whatever decision you make, ensure that it will benefit you as well as the organization! Otherwise, it is not worth the change.