The results of a new poll have revealed major support from both workers and bosses for a Swedish-style six-hour day.
The eight-hour working day has been part of British culture since the days of the Industrial Revolution when Robert Owen campaigned for “Eight hours labour, eight hours recreation, eight hours rest” however, a new survey commissioned by Crown Workplace Relocations says that might all be about to change.
The poll found that three-quarters of office workers (75 per cent) said they were in favour of the six-hour working day. This figure rose to 78 per cent in London.
What’s more, three out of five bosses (60 per cent) also say they would consider introducing a six-hour working day in their business – rising to three-quarters in the capital and 88 per cent in Glasgow. The figure for those working in HR was an incredible 100 per cent!
What employees say:
- Half of office workers said they would do just as much work in six hours as they can in eight – rising to 62 per cent amongst 45-54 year olds
- Over a third said it would improve their wellbeing
- 28 per cent said it would improve relationships with family
- 27 per cent said it would make them more creative
- 16 per cent said they would take fewer sick days, rising to one quarter for those in Edinburgh
- Only 12 per cent thought they would be less productive
And what the bosses say:
- Two out of five think staff would be just as productive in six hours as they are in eight, rising to three-quarters in the legal sector
- Two out of five agree it would improve the wellbeing of staff
- A third said it would improve relationships with family
- One third believed staff would take fewer sick days
- 29 per cent thought it would make staff more creative
- Only one in five feared staff would be less productive
Barry Koolen, regional managing director at Crown Workplace Relocations commented:
“The introduction of a six-hour working day has already been implemented by some employers in Britain with many reporting positive results – improved employee focus and productivity. Historically the British eight-hour working day was created to encourage a work-life balance and these findings suggest we may soon see a new cultural shift towards a six-hour working day.”