How to Implement a Four-Day Workweek

A shortened workweek may boost employee motivation and productivity, but it can cause resentment or disrupt customers just as easily. Here's what you can do to minimize those risks.

Two years ago, the state of Utah ordered 18,000 of its state employees to work four days a week, 10 hours a day, and to take Fridays off. More than three-quarters of employees reported a positive experience a year into this '4/10' program, according to a study by Brigham Young University management professors Rex Facer and Lori Wadsworth. They observed fewer sick days, reduced overtime costs, and savings on energy bills. Employees experienced fewer conflicts between work and family commitments, so their morale shot up. And they knew they only had four days instead of five to get their work done, so they became more productive.

Could this work for your business? It did for Emily Stoddard Furrow and Gretchen DeVault, co-owners of DVQ Studio, a Grand Rapids, Michigan-based branding and communication strategy firm DeVault founded in 2006. "We wanted to make this a different kind of business, so we decided on the four-day workweek from the get-go," DeVault says. "We've all worked in places where you get burned out easily, so we wanted to make this a place where you enjoy coming to work." It's also a way for them to distinguish their company in hiring, because they can attach a value to the benefit of having three-day weekends.

To read further, please click here