More Canadian businesses implementing 4-day workweeks, study says

More Canadian businesses implementing 4-day workweeks, study says

Article content

It seems that more Canadian workplaces are shifting to a four-day workweek, a concept that just a few years ago was unheard of in North America.

There has been a 34 per cent increase in the number of Canadian businesses implementing four-day schedules in the past year alone, according to recently released data by BrightHR, a human resources software provider.

Article content

“A shift to four-day working weeks is significant and should not be underestimated, particularly when taking into account the expectation that employees and employers alike must increase daily productivity by 25 per cent to make up for the lack of additional working day,” said BrightHR’s chief growth officer Thea Watson.

The concept of a four-day workweek has been gaining prominence over the last few years. In a North American pilot run by the group 4 Day Week Global that started in 2022, 41 organizations tested the shortened week, and so far all those companies have made the four-day work week permanent. The reason? Employee retention, recruitment, engagement and mental health have vastly improved — as previously found by similar studies on the topic.

And now trials are underway in other countries, such as Germany and Portugal, where 45 companies and 39 companies, respectively, are taking part.

Watson noted that historically, it was accepted that people work six days per week and it was only within the last century that a five-day workweek was adopted, thanks to American industrialist Henry Ford.

Article content

“This trend is in line with a growing movement towards flexible working arrangements, as companies strive to attract and retain top talent by offering a better work-life balance,” she said.

Burnout rates plummet at companies that move to a working schedule of 32 hours or less each week, according to a report released in February. Productivity and performance metrics improve, too.

Companies that adapted a four-day workweek made more money, with revenue up an average of 15 per cent during the trials, 4 Day Week Global said.

Recommended from Editorial

BrightHR collected the data for the study from its scheduling software, utilized by 7,000 Canadian businesses and over 50,000 of their employees.

• Email: [email protected]

Bookmark our website and support our journalism: Don’t miss the business news you need to know — add to your bookmarks and sign up for our newsletters here.

Share this article in your social network