NEW ZEALAND – 4-DAY WORK WEEK EXPERIMENT BY UNILEVER
A 4 day work week may soon become a reality. The authorities have been called upon by the TUC (Trade Union Congress) to assist people in working fewer hours while still getting paid the same wage.
Now, you must be wondering how such a favourable scenario is possible. Why would business owners let their employees work only four days a week? Won’t the company suffer as a result? You should be thankful to the AIs. It has been revealed by many news articles and blogs that technological developments could make it possible for employees to achieve the same quantity of work in less time and ensure customers are encouraged.
AI technology will significantly disrupt every component of every industry in each country, including how and once we work. Within the near future, we are likely to find a rise in remote and more flexible work programs like the four day work week. In reality, TUC believes that a four day work week may become a reality in this century if businesses are done for sharing the advantages of new technology with their employees.
Not only does a four day work week increase employee satisfaction, firm dedication and teamwork, but it also decreases stress levels.
The advantages and disadvantages associated with a four day work week are as follows.
4 Day Work Week
Chances are you already know someone that functions compressed hours and since these functions fulltime over 35 hours over four times. So, the employee would work around 28 hours over four days and have a three-day weekend.
A 4 day work week may look like a radical idea, but we’ve gradually reduced the number of hours worked inside a typical work week has been dwindling since the late 19th century. The United States government estimated in 1890 that a full-time employee within a production plant worked an average of 100 hours each week. From the mid-20th century, production workers only worked 40 hours every week. Reducing our existing work-week to 28 hours is not nearly as radical.
A 4 day work week is a new model, caused primarily due to recent advances in technology. However, some organizations are already trialling the idea with promising outcomes for both employees and employers.
An in-depth examination of this connection and productivity conducted by Sanford University showed a definite correlation between the two variables. Overworked employees are now less productive than workers working a typical or standard working week.
Employees also experienced less strain, with a decrease of 45% to 38%.
The results from this research are rather unsurprising given that a number of the planet’s most productive countries, like Denmark, Norway, Germany and the Netherlands, on average work approximately 27 hours every week — the very same hours suggested for a UK 4 day work week. On the flip side, Japan, a country notoriously famous for overworked employees, ranks as the 20th out of 35 countries for productivity.
Research on the Gender Pay Gap in the Government Equalities Office indicates that roughly two million British people are not now in employment because of childcare responsibilities and 89% of those individuals are women. A 4 day work week will be great as employees will have more time with their families and better manage maintenance and work obligations.
The workers will be happier and will be more willing to work because of the 4 day week. Workers are less likely to be worried or take sick leave since they have lots of time to rest and recover. Because of this, they return to work feeling prepared to take on fresh challenges.
From 2015 to 2017, Sweden ran a trial study to some shorter work-week. Nurses at a care house worked just 6 hours for five days a week. Results were mostly positive, with nurses logging less sick hours, reporting more excellent health and psychological well-being and greater engagement as they ordered 85% more activities for patients within their care.
Impact on the Environment
Countries with shorter working hours typically possess a bigger carbon footprint, therefore reducing our job week from 5 to 4 days could benefit the environment as well. Shortening our working week means that employees do not have to commute as much and large office buildings are just in use four days weekly.
If workers‘ commutes will also be included, Utah estimated that it could save 12,000 metric tons of CO2, the equivalent of eliminating 2,300 cars off the road for one year, only by working a day less a week!
When there are certainly many benefits to a four day work week, there are also a few advantages. A number of the previously discussed studies, such as the one between Swedish nurses, ultimately decided that the project wasn’t cost-effective. Implementing a four-day work-week may be difficult since it requires the right support, technology and office culture. Unavoidably, new changes will experience some challenges and disadvantages.
The Utah study closed because the customer service was not satisfactory, even though the environmental results were amazing, and the employers and employees both were benefiting. Customers complained that they were unable to access government services with offices closed on a Friday.
Using technologies, like chatbots and AI-powered websites, could solve problems related to customer satisfaction as it would enable customers another route of support rather than relying on office-based team members.
A Different Approach
Many confused the idea of a four day work week using hours. Employees who are predicted to still work 35 hours, however across four times will show decreased levels of productivity, and it may also impact workers‘ engagement, work-life balance and general happiness. To accomplish the desired effects, a four day work week should consist of standard 7-hour workdays.
While we are not quite at this point; however, there may soon come a day in which technology, especially AI, exceeds the capacities of human workers. Some crucial decisions need to be made concerning the future of work and how best protect and promote human workers‘ well-being. The idea of A 4 day work week is a doable alternative as technology will make it possible for the business to continue as usual while people can still have meaningful careers using a better work/life equilibrium.