Daily Management Review

New Zealand company successfully finishes a four-day working week experiment


07/24/2018


During March and April 2018, 240 employees of the New Zealand financial company Perpetual Guardian, managing legacies and trust funds, have been involved in an experiment. They were working four days a week and were very pleased with the results. The number of employees who consider that it is easier to balance work and personal life with such a schedule has grown by a quarter.



pixabay
pixabay
Perpetual Guardian employees worked four days a week for eight hours, but their salary was unchanged. The founder and owner of the company Andrew Barnes decided to conduct an experiment to help his employees find a satisfactory balance between work and family life. It was assumed that, with such a schedule, they would concentrate more deeply on work and devote more time and attention to family and personal life at the expense of the third free day.

Jarrod Haar, Professor of Human Resource Management at the University of Technology of Auckland, who processed statistical data, came to the conclusion that the level of satisfaction with both work and family life among Perpetual Guardian employees has grown. Only a little more than half of the company's employees (54%) were satisfied with the balance between work and personal life in November 2017. After the experiment, this figure grew to 78%. At the same time, the stress level dropped by 7%, and the feeling of job satisfaction increased significantly. The feeling of satisfaction with life in general also rose by 5%.

Experts believe that motivation and dedication to work have increased due to the fact that the workers were allowed to participate in the planning and conduct of the experiment. They developed a number of innovative ideas that allowed increasing labor productivity and achieve more. After summarizing the results of the experiment, Andrew Barnes intends to discuss the transition to a four-day working week in the long run with the board. He believes that the new working model has a very great potential and can improve the life of society.

"Can it be something bad that parents spend more time with their children?" - he asks a rhetorical question and he himself responds negatively to him.

The government of New Zealand followed the progress of the experiment in the Perpetual Guardian. Iain Lees-Galloway of New Zealand Labour Party called his results very interesting and called on businessmen to catch up and test new working models.

"I will be happy to work with any companies," promised the minister, "who are striving to increase labor productivity by offering their employees more flexible and conducive to their conditions."

source: fortune.com






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