It turns out that many employees’ dreams of a long weekend each week have a chance of becoming a reality in the future. Companies are looking for new ways to combat burnout, and the pandemic for many market giants is the time to think about how they can reorganize work. One of the most popular ideas is the four-day work week.
The American monthly newspaper The Atlantic claims that the introduction of the three-day weekend is a change that the labor market will not avoid. One of the first companies to test such a solution was the Japanese subsidiary of Microsoft. The experiment became famous in the world media after it was found that as a result of the new system, employee productivity increased by 40%.
Software company Buffer was one of the precursors of the four-day workweek during the pandemic. In June 2020, its authorities announced that by the end of the year, it would allow 89 employees to work 4 days a week while maintaining their current salary.
At the end of the trial period, Buffer’s management discovered that a shorter work week had a positive effect on employee productivity. At the same time, the workforce has experienced a decrease in the level of stress and an increase in job satisfaction. Staff were also happy with the new system, with one customer service employee saying, “It was a godsend for us.”
The Atlantic confirms that Buffer’s experiment is not complete yet.
Similar tests are underway at Unilever. There, as of December 2021, 81 employees work on a short-term basis. The company guarantees that after the trial period it will thoroughly analyze the experience and decide whether all of its employees will be able to enjoy a longer weekend in the future.
Will the Spanish government pay for the long weekend?
The Guardian reported in March that the Spanish government had agreed to compensate companies that agree to test 32 hours a week. The mechanism aims to cover about 200 employers, which could mean a major life change for thousands of people. The program begins this fall.
Shorter action enthusiasts are counting on the fact that the multi-million dollar program being implemented in Spain will allow researchers to make recommendations for changes in work regulation for companies around the world.