Compressed working week as a lure for job seekers in business services
Business Services Centres on the way to the 4-days working week
Employers in the business services sector are starting to test the compressed working week model. This represents a reduction of the working week from five days to four. The possibility of compressing their working duties in just four days a week is a very popular benefit and offers many advantages to both, employees, and employers. This follows the data of the ABSL association, which brings together business, customer and IT services centres in the Czech Republic.
Discussions about shortening the working week to just 4 days are beginning to intensify in the Czech Republic. The first step toward its implementation is currently underway in the business services sector, where some employers are testing a compressed working week. Within it, employees can spread their duties to only 4 days a week. This is possible, among other things, by the high degree of automation and digitization that is characteristic of this sector. The motivation for this step is mainly the effort to attract job seekers and increase the loyalty of existing employees.
„In the business services sector, we are seeing a growing number of companies that are interested in the compressed working model and that are testing it. Thanks to this innovation, they can maintain and even strengthen the loyalty and satisfaction of their employees, which is today, when the shortage of quality candidates on the labour market prevails, very important”
says Jonathan Appleton, Director of ABSL. This is confirmed by data from companies that test the compressed working week. Two-thirds of them say that providing a four-day working week has significantly helped them attract and retain talents. In addition, their employees are happier, less stressed, and do a better job.
A compressed working week brings benefits to both sides
According to a survey of the work pace in the Czech Republic, 66 % of employees are interested in a four-day working week. Employees can use extra day for active or passive rest, as well as for doctor visits, family care, and other arbitrary activities. According to a number of studies, more relaxed employees are less at risk of burnout. Employers can also benefit from the fact that thanks to a shorter working week, employees have more time to develop new skills, which they can then apply at work. In general, this model helps to find a better work-life balance, when COVID time has significantly violated this limit due to more frequent work from home.
Other companies are joining Novartis
Novartis has become a pioneer in the business services sector in introducing a compressed working week which is tested as part of its Reimagine Workplace project. Based on an agreement within the teams and from the managers, employees can work 4 working days a week twice a month.
„ During the transition from a six-day working week to a five-day one in 1968, the then Czechoslovakia outrun many Western European countries, which made this decision many years later. Even then, the idea prevailed in Europe that, thanks to science and technical progress, we will be able to work less, maybe just three days a week in the future. I am glad that now, with further shortening, it is our sector that is one step ahead. A compressed workweek is just an intermediate step”
adds Jonathan Appleton.