Is the 4-day work week the future in the labour market?

Currently, we are seeing a change in companies’ approach to creating an internal organizational culture. There is an increasing talk of a 4-day work week, reduced working hours, flexible work tailored to needs or unlimited vacations. In this article, we take a look at the topic of the 4-day work week, which more and more companies are opting for. How will reducing the number of workdays to 4 affect the efficiency of the teams and the achievement of their goals?

The idea of a 4-day work week

What is a 4-day work week? This is simply a reduction in the number of working days for employees. The ways to apply this change are many. It could be an extra day off, it could be an extension or reduction of working hours. The idea is to move away from the norm of 40-50 work weeks per year. 40 working hours per week. Such a change makes it easier for employees to maintain their work-life balance. Employees would have more time to spend with their families, develop their passions or relax. Studies show that such a change would not only, not negatively affect productivity, but actually increase it.

Interest in making changes to the classic 5-day workweek model increased in 2018 when a pilot project by Perpetual Guardian, a New Zealand company, came out positively.

In 2019, Microsoft tested the idea at its Japanese subsidiary and found that it saw as much as a 40% increase in productivity.

Research on the 4-day work week

Year after year, the number of companies around the world where the 4-day workweek is being introduced is increasing. From a recent survey of 1,021 full-time US workers conducted in January 2022, we can find out what they think of 4-day work weeks. This is what some of the results look like:

  • 92% of the surveyed employees would support their employer implementing a four-day work week
  • 88% of employees said it would improve their work-life balance
  • 79% of respondents believe it would improve their mental health
  • 82% say it would make them more productive
  • 74% of employees think they could do the same amount of work in four days

As can be deduced from the quoted results, employees are mostly in favor of the introduction of a 4-day work week. Having less time to perform specific activities can be an additional motivator, as well as lead to better organization of time.

4-day work week in Polish organizations

In Poland, for example, the 4-day work week has been introduced by InStreamly. They are creating their streaming platform, where anyone, even the smallest creator, can make money. As part of our HR Changers podcast, we spoke with InStreamly CEO Maciej Sawicki (and there will be a webinar with him on September 8. In the podcast, we talked about, among other things, the 4-day work week and its impact on the organization. The inspiration and “pro” factors for introducing such a model at home included Netflix and their thesis that control is unnecessary. It doesn’t matter who works how much, it matters what value they bring. It is not important whether the employee worked 4 days or 5. The important thing is that he did what he agreed to do. Trust and building mutual partnerships are also important in all of this. Openness and transparency are also important, so no one should feel controlled. InStreamly is a turquoise organization (read more about what exactly the turquoise organization model is HERE) that operates 100% remotely. In addition to the 4-day workweek, they also have a number of other HR innovations, such as unlimited vacations. The ability to operate based on such a philosophy requires the development of a great deal of trust between members of the organization. Hopefully, more such family businesses that care about the common good will emerge.

Webinar “4-Day Workweek”

We at Talent Place decided to hold a webinar dealing with the topic of the four-day work week, our guests will be:

Annika Albert, Head of People Operations at Scoro Software. The company develops comprehensive labour management software that helps companies increase margins and accelerate data-driven decision-making in more than 60 countries. The internal use of Scoro played a significant role in the company’s successful transition to a 4-day work week.

Eva Skubida,Director of Talent Acquisition at G2i, a recruitment platform that connects skilled developers with amazing companies. The company focuses on vetting and serving clients who support the developers’ health mission – using our knowledge and experience to match individuals with healthier work environments that improve their health, support recovery from job burnout and enable professional growth through quiet work.

Maciej Sawicki, CEO of inStreamly, a platform that connects metaverse creators with brands. The platform is used by more than 50,000 creators and several hundred brands such as Netflix, Samsung and Adidas. In 2022, inStreamly introduced an unlimited vacation policy and is in the process of introducing a 4-day work week.
Join the meeting and hear about the 4-day work week from the pros

Patrycja Cieślik

Want to know more?

If you have specific questions, please send them to us via the contact form.

"*" indicates required fields

Get to know us better

Join our group
and stay up to date
with HR trends!

Talent Place is part of Everuptive Group, a provider of effective business solutions based on the potential of the Internet and modern technologies.

Any questions?