How many of you are really enjoying your leisure time?
I guess the answer will be a big NO.
In India, we got used to work for full 7 days for that extra money. The reason is not getting paid enough to sustain. But that not only impacts work productivity but also individual health due to constant stress.
New Zealand Company Perpetual Guardian is going to launch a six-week trial to its more than 200 employees in 16 offices around the country where its full time staff will work for four days a week but still be paid for five days. Founder Andrew Barnes said that reaction from staff was one of “shock”.
The company wants to implement the policy permanently from July 1 if successful.
“Germany and the Netherlands already have 32-hour work weeks. The idea behind the four-day week is to increase productivity and workers would work 32 hours instead of 40 hours. Four-day weeks could mean employees might have to work weekends and take weekdays off,” said Perpetual founder Andrew Barnes.
“Employees live very different lives today. They are single parents, or both working parents, and most of all they want a life outside of work too,” he said.
“Employers have the responsibility of thinking about the health and well being of their employees.”
However, Employers and Manufacturers Association chief executive Kim Campbell said he was sceptical about Perpetual Guardian’s trial.
“It’s an expensive experiment if you ask me. It could be a big cost for businesses if productivity was not met. If a business is well funded then go for it. Trial it, good luck,” said Campbell.
Barnes said, “The trial had attracted a lot of interest from other employers. I’m very committed to this, and I really hope that the trial works in proving that you don’t have to work five days to be productive.”
Barnes hoped giving his employees an extra day to deal with family commitments, hobbies and general life maintenance would make them more focused on the four days spent at the office, in which they would only be required to work standard business hours.
Jarrod Haar, professor of human resources management at Auckland University of Technology, said the shorter week could benefit businesses in the long run by reducing employee turnover, as more workers would be satisfied with their jobs.
On the other way, it also raised questions around overtime pay, sick leave provision, statutory holidays and annual leave accumulation.
“These are all issues that have to be identified and agreed on so that there’s no argument further down the track when people move to a four-day week,” said National Secretary for E tū union Bill Newson.
“But assuming all of those issues and others are recognized and agreed to, then the attraction of a three-day weekend is compelling.”
A more productive week would allow businesses to get the most out of their workers.
Do you think this concept of working for four days a week but still be paid for five days is followed in India ever? Share us in the comments. Working hours of these 10 countries around the world.