Sofia Tyson blog avatar
Sofia Tyson
Aug. 12, 2021
AUTHOR:
Sofia Tyson
PUBLISHED:
Aug. 12, 2021
LAST UPDATED:
Aug. 23, 2021

Reboot Introduce 4-Day Working Week Following 702% Increase In Results

In case you hadn’t heard already, Reboot is exploring more opportunities to boost employee productivity and well-being. From increased team-building activities to birthday celebrations and our new hybrid work model, we are doing what we do best and experimenting to find out what works well for our people and brand, all whilst maintaining the unrivalled results we get for our clients. Our employees are at the heart of our business, and so we take a progressive stance in protecting their well-being and growth. 

That’s why, in true Reboot fashion, we have already decided to embark on our next mission: saying goodbye to work on a Friday and welcoming the 4-day working week. Here is how and why.

What Is The 4-Day Working Week?

   

The four-day working week is fairly self-explanatory. It is an initiative whereby a company compresses their work schedule into four days and departs from the traditional 5-day working week we are used to. In fact, the model is becoming more popular than ever before, with the recent pandemic highlighting that individuals are suffering from burnout, stress and poor health due to the increasing demands in their daily lives. 

But what are the proposed benefits of this shorter week? Well, it is expected to provide employees and businesses with:

  • A better work-life balance, meaning more time with family and friends; 

  • More (much needed) rest;

  • Greater motivation to complete work tasks, which can increase productivity;

  • More time to work on their personal development and health (e.g more time for exercise!);

  • Better employee engagement;

  • A decreased carbon footprint;

  • Improved well-being overall;

  • Reduced staff turnover.

But of course, the model also has its sceptics, with many businesses reluctant to take the plunge due to concerns about how this will affect their performance and client satisfaction. However, as you will read next, there are plenty of arguments that both practically and economically, the 4 day week might improve your business. Hence we are taking the plunge...

                                           
     

Our Inspiration Behind The New Initiative

Coronavirus has posed a significant hurdle to many businesses in the past year or so, altering the way we work, where we work and now when we work. However, as many will agree, some of these changes have been for the better - particularly flexible working. 

Flexible working is something many businesses have frowned upon previously, however, having been forced into this new model, Reboot has been fortunate enough to thrive.

In the past year alone, our agency has grown considerably. We have welcomed 50 new clients and 25 new staff members, attracting clients such as JustEat, Uswitch and eToro in what has been to many, a challenging period. However, that is not all. Reboot has also experienced a 702% increase in results and outputs. Our agency is in an incredibly exciting period of growth, and that is a clear sign of how successful a flexible working model has been for us, but also it is a clear sign of how committed our teams are in driving results for our clients. We wanted to extend this progress and seek further ways to improve both productivity and well-being within our agency.

There was also the major success of the Iceland trial - which was the world’s largest. In the cross-industry trial, roughly 2,500 workers were paid the same wage for working fewer hours (typically reducing their 40 hour week to a 35 hour week). 

The result? The study found that productivity either remained the same or actually improved in the majority of workplaces, spurring Iceland’s unions to renegotiate working patterns in the future with shorter hours in mind. And Iceland is not the only advocate of a 4-day week, since the initiative has been firmly backed by professionals, with numerous authors building the case for a shorter working week without reducing pay in their books. There is a clear argument that it works. 

On talking about the driving force behind the decision, our Managing Director, Shai says that:

“In July 2021, the results of the Icelandic trial were published and what was particularly striking was that productivity had remained the same, if not improved.

Being a data and research-led marketing agency, this sort of innovation is in our DNA as a company. The 4 day week is a concept we had been thinking about for quite some time, but the prospect was a big step for the company, so it required a lot of strategic planning internally, as well as consultations with clients.

What was interesting from the Icelandic trial, is that a 4-day week is not a revolutionary concept as more than 80% of businesses are already implementing this. It alleviated our anxieties and gave us the reassurance that this could work for us.

Whilst a 4-day week is not viable for some businesses, we’re fortunate to work in a creative, and forward-thinking industry, and I believe other agencies will also follow this concept, as we’re very much used to adapting quickly, ensuring accommodating this change was an easy one.

After all, the last 18 months has shed a light on a ‘new norm’.”

 

Reboot’s 4-Day Week Model

So, you know why we are doing it. But what does a 4-day week look like for Reboot?

Working Hours

As part of our initiative, Reboot will be retaining the same daily work hours between Monday and Thursday. This means that the team will not be required to work additional hours on these days to compensate for the Friday they have off of work. We have chosen to do this since we are confident in the commitment and capacity of our employees to achieve the same results within fewer hours by encouraging greater productivity within these. 

Salary

We also will not be amending salary in line with the shorter working week. Rather, employees will retain their existing salary and will still have the same opportunities for progression that they did previously with Reboot. Like in the highly successful trial in Iceland, we will not allow shorter working hours to affect pay, particularly given how important financial stability is in today’s world. 

Holiday / Sick Leave

Of course, holiday and sick leave remain non-negotiables. Therefore, our existing provisions on holiday and sick leave will , naturally, remain unaffected. If our team wanted to take Fridays off using their holiday, then they would do just that. We believe that deducting holidays for work-free Fridays would be counterproductive, and would not assist us in seeing the results we need, nor would it be right to do so. 

Flexible Working 

Flexible working has become the norm throughout Coronavirus, and it will continue to be whilst the world takes time to adjust (and potentially even longer if that is something our management and team collectively feel confident in). Therefore, our flexible working options will remain firmly in place throughout the trial, including our new (very exciting!) hybrid model. 

Close Monitoring and Support 

As with any big changes, we will be committed to providing support to our employees throughout the trial to ensure that their workload and wellbeing is managed as effectively and carefully as possible. 

 

 

How Will Reboot Measure The Success Of The Trial?

The 4-day working week will be trialled over at Reboot over a 3-month period, with the intention to publish our results and findings at the end of this period for ultimate transparency. We are, of course, hopeful that we will see continued engagement at work, a better work-life balance, enhanced productivity and positive employee well-being. However, to ensure that this is the case and to continue the initiative on a permanent basis, we will be reviewing certain aspects of the trial very closely. These include: 

 

1. Performance

Reboot will measure performance closely. We aim to measure employee performance on a weekly basis, utilising in-house KPIs in particular as an indication of this. Specifically, we will be comparing the results to those previously achieved from January 2021 onwards for the best insight.

 

2. Productivity

We will also be measuring the effects that the 4-day working week has on productivity. This will not be synonymous to performance, but it will instead be assessed through numerous high and medium level metrics such as creative output, employee well-being, reported absences and client performance results. Again, we will reflect on these results regularly over the period of the trial.

 

3. Employee Well-being 

As part of the trial, we are keen to understand whether employee well-being is being positively or negatively affected by removing Friday from our working week. We strongly anticipate that it will be the former, however, we will conduct anonymous employee surveys throughout the process, along with quarterly feedback surveys, to gain an insight into how our team are feeling about the change.

 

 

 

How Will This Work Alongside Reboot’s Ongoing Strategy?

The notion of a four day week is very in keeping with who we are as a company and our ethos, particularly given our experimental nature as a digital PR agency. This is why our decision to trial a shorter working week appears to be the natural next step for Reboot. As our Creative Director, Abby Chinery shares:

“We’re already so open to changing our ways of working now, having been forced to do so because of the pandemic anyway and seeing that you absolutely do not need to be sat in a traditional office to get the work done.

This past year has taught us how important a good work-life balance is – and how much it can improve results.”

We have grown keen to embrace flexibility and the benefits it brings, and that is something that goes hand in hand with our permanent work-from-home structure whereby our teams will work primarily from home yet have the opportunity to utilise large co-working spaces to continue to reap the benefits of collaboration, human interaction and face-to-face team-building on a regular basis. 

By empowering our employees to work increasingly on their own terms, we can support them in building a better work-life balance, scout fresh talent and evolve with the industry as we grow - which we are confident will benefit our clients and business alike. Naturally, some businesses are sceptical of the introduction of a 4-day week, and they believe that they simply couldn’t function the same way were they to cut back on working days. However, as many businesses within the creative industry will agree, we are incredibly fortunate to sit amongst such a creative and progressive industry that allows us to work so flexibly - and the past year has been a testament to that. 

If you want to follow our journey as we embark on the 4-day week, follow us on Twitter or get in touch