The four-day week is working

63% of businesses found it easier to attract and retain talent with a 4 day week

This is the finding for some companies, but not all, in the closely watched trial of a four-day work week pilot programme run by the non-profit 4 Day Week Global.

So far, 88% of respondents to a survey of the trial stated that the four-day week was working well for them.

In June this year, 73 companies and more than 3,300 workers agreed to participate in the UK’s largest ever four-day working week pilot. The trial is currently in its fourth month.

The survey found that 78% of leaders who shifted their schedules to a four-day week said their transition was good or “seamless.” Only 2% found it challenging. Most (88%) say that four-day schedules are working well.

At the halfway point in the six-month trial, data shows that most companies maintain or improve productivity. However, some more traditional businesses have found the move to a four-day week more challenging.

Joe O’Connor, Chief Executive of 4 Week Global, said: “For many, it is a fairly smooth transition, and for some, there are some understandable hurdles – especially among those which have comparatively fixed or inflexible practices, systems, or cultures which date back well into the last century.”

4 Day Week Global, along with Autonomy, a think tank and researchers at Cambridge and Oxford universities, are running the scheme across the UK, US, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

Of the 41 firms that responded to the survey held midway through the UK pilot, 86% of those surveyed said they would keep the four-day week policy going after the trial ends.

Employees said they benefited from lower commuting and childcare costs and claimed that a parent with two children would save £3,232.40 per year or roughly £269.36 per month.

The companies participating in the trial are from a wide range of sectors, including banking, care, online retail, IT software training, housing, animation studios, hospitality, and more.

Researchers have been working with each participating business to measure the impact on productivity and the wellbeing of employees, as well as the impact on the environment and gender equality.

To find out more about the four-day week UK trial, click here.

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