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The four-day work week, which has already been tried, worked

The four-day work week, which has already been tried, worked

From the test results, they concluded that the new work schedule worked for the majority of testers. The employees and the companies had somewhat positive experiences. Staff turnover and the number of absences are significantly reduced, productivity remains at the previous level, employees feel more balanced – Written by Vilaggazdaság.

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Recently, trials have been carried out in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, Brazil and even Hungary.

Working hours of less than 40 hours a week have long preoccupied people. Just as remote work schedules and hybrid work (i.e. a combination of home and office work) are becoming more popular due to the coronavirus pandemic, the idea of ​​shorter work hours has come up again.

The new wave of trials began after many people became overwhelmed and mentally exhausted at work during the pandemic and thus tried to start a regimen that would spare them. Nowadays, retaining and hiring employees is one of the most important drivers for companies. And for several months now, high energy prices cannot be ignored, because it does not matter at all how many days a week the office building needs heating.

In the UK, they were interested in whether working just four days for pay improves employee well-being and job loyalty, and what effect this has on business operations.

The results were very promising. Campaign manager Joe Ryle summarized the results as follows

The initiative’s unstated intention was to introduce a 32-hour work week on a general basis in the UK.

More than 900 employees of 33 companies in the United States and Ireland tested the four-day work week from April last year, in the same biannual time period as the British. The goal was for workers to get 100 percent of their salary 80 percent of the time and for their productivity to remain at the same level. Working hours decreased to an average of six hours per week, from 41 to 35 hours.

Here, employees rated the new work order particularly high, 9.1, on the scale already mentioned, and 97 percent of people wanted to work that way after the end of the experiment. According to the workers’ self-report, their level of performance increased, and burnout and burnout rates decreased in the sample. People found it easier to control their schedules and save an hour per week by commuting, even though personal work time increased during the trial period.

According to Shanti Mathew, executive director of the Public Policy Lab, the narrative that equal clock performance is very strong, but it’s not. This was the biggest mental and emotional hurdle in his company. They realize that they are not equally productive in every hour of their five-day, 40-hour work week, and that they can do the same amount of work in less time. According to Leader, it’s also about trust between employers and employees, as they give people more power over their schedules and how they work on behalf of the organization.

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If we trust people, they will prove themselves to be trustworthy

– Tell.

But there are many obstacles to the wide introduction, and along with the many positive ones, there were, of course, also failed experiments. Most companies trying to operate four days a week are small business owners, so there is not enough experience on the effects on the operations of large companies. In addition, in some companies, employees find it difficult to do everything in a shorter time.

Moreover, it should be noted that once such a popular system is introduced somewhere, it is difficult to withdraw it, CNBC noted.

In Hungary, Magyar Telekom is already testing the four-day work week until August, and Libri-Bookline introduced the 34-hour work week as a permanent work schedule last fall.

Cover image: Illustration (Photo:

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