A growing number of companies are opting for the four-day week as Britons want a better work-life balance

Saturday, January 15, 2022 9:42 a.m.

A woman walks through the architectural vertical lines of an office entrance in the City of London

After Atom Bank announced plans to introduce a four-day working week late last year, a growing number of companies are looking to introduce the so-called ‘4-3 model’.

Panasonic and Bolt have become the latest employers to shave one day a week.

They follow the trend that more and more Britons are actively seeking a four-day working week or have already agreed one with their current employer.

Demand for a four-day workweek is driven by those under 45, and many are willing to quit to find a job that offers it, according to new data from Censuswide, on behalf of ClickUp.

The data shows this most among 35-44 year olds, with nearly a fifth preparing to quit their job next year to find a new role that offers it, while 16% plan to apply for a job. their current employer a four-year job. day work week in 2022.

This attitude is shared by young working people with 18% of 25-34 year olds and 15.3% of 16-24 year olds also ready to leave their job to find one offering a four-day working week.

Zeb Evans, CEO of ClickUp, said AM City today that “an increasing number of people are demanding a four-day week. It won’t suit all people or all businesses, but those who want to explore the idea can start by looking at their productivity. »

ClickUp’s findings are backed up by Atom Bank’s experiences.

The introduction of its four-day working week led to a 500% increase in job applications and boosted staff morale.

Britain’s first app-based bank saw the number of people applying for vacancies in a week, shortly after announcing that all staff could work 34 hours in four days instead of the usual 37.5 hours in five days – without a pay cut.

Mark Mullen, chief executive of the digital lender, said while it was “too early to declare victory”, the trial results so far have been encouraging.

Productivity and satisfaction

The data comes from commerce protection provider Signifyd, which today announced that it will “drive the future of work forward”, as the company puts it, by permanently shifting its operation to a working week of four days after months of trials that have proven beneficial. productivity and employee satisfaction.

The four-day workweek will provide Signifyd’s mostly remote workforce the flexibility to perform work/life rebalancing and the opportunity to take better care of themselves, as well as their friends and families. , explained the vice president of human operations of the company, Emily Mikailli.

“When employees are literally working in the same place where they are supposed to play and relax, burnout becomes a very real possibility.”

Emilie Mikailli

While business leaders have long debated this decision, the unique pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic have played a key role in bringing attention to change,” she said.

“The data shows that four-day work weeks have proven to be helpful in this regard. Our business is based on the power of data.

“It wouldn’t make much sense to ignore the data in this case, especially when it’s an issue vital to the well-being of our employees,” Mikailli continued.

Nature of shift work

The nature of work and the workplace have changed dramatically over the two years of the pandemic.

In many companies, working from home is no longer the exception. This is often the rule. Hybrid working arrangements are commonplace.

The next wave of change will likely be dominated by changes that make these arrangements more enjoyable, productive and rewarding for employees, said Raj Ramanand, CEO of Signifyd.

“I believe that in the not-too-distant future, the four-day work week will be a challenge for companies looking to hire the most capable, creative and committed candidates in the market,” he added.

Meant CEO Raj Ramanand.

The keys to a successful four-day weekly work schedule are communication and flexibility, Mikailli added.

“A policy that means employees aren’t expected to work on a given day doesn’t mean employees can’t work on a given day. Some might see the day as a chance to focus more deeply on a work-related project — without the interruption of meetings,” she said.

Some might use a few hours to catch up on work-related tasks that they would otherwise find themselves catching up on, on a Saturday or Sunday.

“The end goal is to reduce stress and help people be more efficient, and that can be different from employee to employee,” Mikailli concluded.