More than 3,300 workers in 70 UK companies have begun a four-day working week – with no loss of pay.
The pilot runs for six months and is based on the principle of 100:80:100 – 100 percent of the pay for 80 percent of the time in exchange for 100 percent of the productivity.
The businesses range from a fish and chip shop to large corporates, and the sectors range from education, banking, IT, and legal training.
Researchers from 4 Day Week Global will work with the companies involved to measure the impact on productivity and the wellbeing of its workers.
Government-backed four-day week trials are also set to begin later this year in Spain and Scotland.
Joe O’Connor, CEO of 4 Day Week Global, said: “The UK is at the crest of a wave of global momentum behind the four-day week.
“As we emerge from the pandemic, more and more companies are recognizing that the new frontier for competition is quality of life, and that reduced-hour, output-focused working is the vehicle to give them a competitive edge.
“The impact of the ‘great resignation’ is now proving that workers from a diverse range of industries can produce better outcomes while working shorter and smarter.”
Juliet Schor, Professor of Sociology at Boston College, and lead researcher on the pilot, said: “I’m excited to be working on the research side for this historic trial.
“We’ll be analyzing how employees respond to having an extra day off, in terms of stress and burnout, job and life satisfaction, health, sleep, energy use, travel and many other aspects of life.
Some of the businesses taking part are:
- 5 Squirrels
- AKA Case Management
- Allcap Limited
- Bedrock Learning
- Boom Studios
- Charity Bank
- Evolution Money Limited
- Future Talent Learning
- Girling Jones
- Helping Hands
- IE Brand
- Literal Humans
- Loud Mouth Media
- Merthyr Valley Homes Limited
- Outcomes Based Healthcare
- Outcomes First Group
- Platten’s Fish and Chips
- Pressure Drop Brewing
- Rivelin Robotics
- Royal Society of Biology
- Scotland’s International Development Alliance
- Secure Digital Exchange Ltd
- Sounds Like These
- Stellar Asset Management
- The Story Mob
- Timberlake Consultants Ltd / TLKE Ltd
- Trio Media
- Tyler Grange
- We Are Purposeful
- Yo Telecom
“Spending more time with my kids is the best thing about a four-day week. It’s amazing.”
General Manager Kirsty Wainwright of Plattens Fish and Chips in Wells-Next-The-Sea in Norfolk already works a four-day week and is confident the pilot rollout across the business for all staff will be a success.
She said: “The option of working a four-day week was the main reason for choosing to work here.
“The hospitality industry has really unsociable working hours and it needs to change. It’s not surprising the industry has been struggling with recruitment given the excessively long working hours.
“On a five-day week I didn’t get to see my kids enough. Spending more time with my kids is the best thing about a four-day week. It’s amazing.
“Having that extra rest and not feeling exhausted means I can be more productive at work too.”