Atom Bank, an internet bank, has implemented a four-day work week for its 430 employees without reducing their salary.
Employees now work 34 hours over four days and get Monday or Friday off, compared to 37.5 hours over the course of the week previously.
It was inspired by the epidemic, said to boss Mark Mullen, and would assist enhance employee wellbeing and retention.
Employees will, however, be required to work longer hours on days when they are in.
Mr Mullen, who has run the Durham-based bank since 2014, said, “Before Covid, the common thought was that you had to commute in, sit at a desk all day, and repeat that process when you commuted home.”
“It wasn’t essential, as Covid demonstrated… Working from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, strikes me as somewhat archaic.”
Atom was one of the earliest digital challenger banks in the UK, with £2.7 billion in loans on its books last year. After an assessment, it was determined that the new working arrangements would not harm customer service or productivity. They went into effect on November 1st.
Mr Mullen stated that the new arrangement was voluntary, but it reflected his employees’ need for more flexibility in their work schedules.
He went on to say, “Everyone is required to keep to it.” “I can’t expect my employees to react to emails sent on Friday.”
The way people work has evolved throughout time. Most British employees worked six-day weeks in the nineteenth century, but in the 1930s, Henry Ford in the United States and pharmaceutical chain Boots in the United Kingdom popularized the two-day weekend as a method to improve welfare and productivity.
Now, there are rising proposals for a four-day work week, with similar assertions that it will enhance people’s lives.
Trials of a four-day week among public sector workers in Iceland were a “overwhelming success,” according to recent study, and helped reduce stress and burnout.
In 2019, Microsoft Japan reported that sales increased by over 40% as a result of an experiment in which employees worked a four-day week for full pay.
Some employers, on the other hand, consider it is unethical.
The Wellcome Trust, a UK science research organisation, canceled plans to implement a four-day workweek for its 800 head office personnel in 2019, claiming it would be “extremely administratively difficult.”
The decision was made after a three-month research indicated that cramming work into a Monday-to-Thursday window had a detrimental impact on certain workers’ well-being and harmed productivity.