Every weekend could be a long weekend if your company follows in the footsteps of Perpetual Guardian - a New Zealand firm that's been paying employees their regular 5-day salary for a 4-day work week. The experiment has boosted productivity so much, the company now plans to make the change permanent.
"Supervisors said staff were more creative, their attendance was better, they were on time, and they didn't leave early or take long breaks," Jarrod Haar - a human resources professor at Auckland University of Technology - explained to The New York Times. "Their actual job performance didn't change when doing it over 4 days instead of 5."
To figure out how to complete everything expected of them over 40 hours in just 32, Haar says that employees "worked out where they were wasting time and worked smarter, not harder."
The employees also claimed the change lead to a 24 percent improvement in their work-life balance.
Perpetual Guardian's founder Andrew Barnes says the results of the study advocate for employment systems based on contracts, not hourly commitments. Employees should be given clear guidelines on what is expected of them each week and be paid to complete those tasks.
"Otherwise you’re saying, 'I'm too lazy to figure out what I want from you, so I'm just going to pay you for showing up,'" Barnes said. "[A] contract should be about an agreed level of productivity. If you deliver that in less time, why should I cut your pay?"
Here's hoping this becomes a trend stateside and we all get a little more time to pursue our passions.