July 20, 2022
Interest in the four day work week is rising yet millions of UK workers are set to miss out, according to research from ClickUp. It found that certain careers are more likely to miss out on the idea of working a day less each week for no reduction in pay, as other employment sectors may go ahead. Businesses must take action to close these gaps to create equity for workers in the UK, the report argues.
Those working in education reported the highest levels of pessimism, with 44 percent of workers believing it is unrealistic to move to a four day work week with no reduction in pay. Three other sectors stood out above the national average of 32 percent, including those in manufacturing (41 percent), human resources (38 percent), and travel (37 percent). In contrast, only 17 percent of those working in IT & telecoms believe a four day work week is unrealistic, followed closely by those working in the legal (18 percent) and creative (21 percent) industries. The table below reveals where UK workers believe they are most likely to miss out on any 4-day work week revolution:
ClickUp’s research claims that there are many reasons workers believe are holding them back from adopting a four day work week. The top two reasons, each cited by 22 percent of UK workers, are that people are simply too busy to do their best work, and that there are too many meetings. Other reasons adding to the negativity toward a four day work week include technology and tools not being effective enough in helping to get the job done (17 percent), businesses not getting their remote or hybrid working models right (16 percent), and employers not effectively prioritising and focusing on results (15 percent).
“There is no one-size fits all, says Natasha Wallace of ClickUp. “A fourday work week isn’t right for every business or every individual. However, there is hope for those who do want to adopt a four day work week but are resigned to the fact it may not work for them. Make incremental changes, start with pushing for async working to cut down unnecessary meetings, create a culture that focuses on results and outputs rather than presenteeism, or invest in the right tools to improve efficiency and communication. There is a lot that businesses and individuals can do to improve their flexibility and, perhaps more importantly, their productivity too.”