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It’s officially summer! The sun is shining, the days are longer, and for many, our minds are already in vacation mode even if our bodies are still planted at our desks.

This begs the question: with the lure of sunshine and weekend adventures, can companies possibly expect peak productivity during these warm months?

The answer might lie not in pushing harder but in working smarter. Many companies across industries have begun to experiment with flexible work arrangements, particularly in the form of Summer Fridays.

But is there evidence that this approach actually leads to higher productivity and happier employees? Let’s find out!

What Are Summer Fridays?

This depends on where you work because Summer Fridays can mean something different at every company. For some, it means a half day. For others, it means clocking out an hour earlier than usual. And in some cases, it means being completely off all day!

Can Summer Fridays Boost Morale and Efficiency?

This study from ADP suggests that they can! They found that 66% of employees who have summer schedules say it increases their productivity.

The logic behind this isn’t hard to grasp. When employees know they have a shorter workweek or routine time off, they can be more likely to focus and prioritize tasks when they’re in the office.

Knowing there’s less time to complete their work can also be a powerful motivator to avoid procrastination and streamline workflow. Additionally, the prospect of a longer weekend provides a welcome stress reliever, leading to happier and more engaged employees.

Could a 4-Day Work Week Be Beneficial Year-Round?

The concept of a four-day workweek isn’t just a summertime fantasy. Many companies worldwide have embraced this model year-round and others are experimenting with it to see how it impacts company culture.

For example, education software maker Kuali operates on a 32-hour work week. They’ve noticed a lot of benefits, particularly with employee retention rates:

“It’s a great retention tool. Employee churn is the most expensive productivity loss there is. The fact we don’t have to retrain employees is a big deal.”

Joel Dehlin, Kuali CEO

Another company that offers this type of schedule is KPMG, a global tax and advisory firm. Their US employees have the opportunity to engage in a 4-day work week.

“We recognize it’s a win-win for the company and the employees,” said Barbara Wankoff, KPMG’s director of workplace solutions. “Their satisfaction goes way up when they have control over their time. And it increases employee morale and productivity and retention.”

-Barbara Wankoff, KPMG’s Director of Workplace Solutions

People have been talking about this concept for a few years now but now it seems like a reality that could benefit a lot of companies. Additionally, surveys suggest that a four-day, 40-hour workweek would have a positive impact on employee’s well-being.

The Bottom Line: Is It Right for Your Business?

Of course, the decision to implement a four-day workweek or Summer Fridays requires careful consideration. The nature of your business, your workflow, and the needs of your employees will all play a role.

If you’re looking for other ways to boost productivity and engagement over the summer, you can do it without altering your current schedule. Consider these options to get started:

  • Schedule team events – For those in the office, this can be a great way to get everyone involved throughout the slower months.
  • Offer an additional remote day during the week – Even if everyone is still working a full schedule, you could offer them a summer perk by letting them choose to work from home!
  • Host no-camera Fridays – This can provide a more relaxed transition into the weekend as people can take meetings without being on camera.

Whether you decide to take the plunge or not, it’s certainly worth exploring what Summer Fridays or a 4-day work week could do for your team. After all, in today’s competitive business landscape, a happier, more productive workforce can be your greatest asset.

Our team is here to assist you in overcoming any HR challenges you may be experiencing. We can provide the necessary tools and resources to help you effectively manage your benefits and reduce stress among your employees. Get in touch with us today for further information!