If you’ve been dreaming about a shorter workweek, good news: there are now statistics to back the fantasy up as a viable idea.
Earlier this year, a New Zealand company rolled out a four-day, 32-hour workweek on a trial basis, and the results showed it was an overwhelming success.
The New York Times reports that the 240 employees at trust management firm Perpetual Guardian were found to be more productive with a shorter workweek. For two months, the company set up an experimental schedule where employees worked for four days, but still got paid for five.
Researchers from the University of Auckland who surveyed company employees during the two-month trial run found that 24% reported a healthier work-life balance. Having more time to see their families and work on hobbies led to being more energized at the office. On top of that, work productivity increased. Staff arrived on time with better attendance and scheduled their workdays more effectively, including taking shorter breaks and having shorter meetings. The policy also benefited those who need more support in and out of the office, including working parents and new parents on leave. After the overwhelmingly positive feedback, the company hopes to make the change permanent.
A four-day workweek really does sound like a dream: a logical, reasonable, and now achievable one.
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