Championing a 4-day work week

Time for a change

As a part of our commitment to mental health and wellbeing, we’re offering our team members the opportunity to be more flexible with their working days. In short – providing client targets are continually met, and staff are happy with the setup (we don’t want this initiative to make anyone feel more pressured) – full-timers could enjoy a 4-day work week. Part-time employees will also have the opportunity to flex, based on the equivalent reduction of their monthly hours.

That’s a potential decrease of at least 13% every month.

That’s ‘22 for You’ – Up to 22 hours every month for our staff to spend doing whatever they want, however they want.

These 22 hours could be spent:

  • With family, friends and loved ones
  • Avoiding family, friends and loved ones
  • Nurturing personal growth
  • Reconnecting with the great outdoors
  • Giving back to the community
  • Finally starting (or finishing) that long-outstanding passion project
  • Getting some well-deserved downtime

So why are we doing this?

Because it should always be about real partnership between Calibro and its people. Because the personal possibilities are endless. The professional opportunities are great. And the business rewards are impressive. 

Because it’s the right thing to do

Calibro’s partnership philosophy is key. We want to work for – and with – the best. That’s why we’re always trying to find new ways to create a more supportive and enjoyable workplace for our employees – and just as importantly, their families. We believe the greatest way to encourage growth and avoid burnout is to forge a fair and trusting environment where all team members can thrive.

We also hope it helps to level the playing field – whether by enabling a better distribution of caring responsibilities between Mums and Dads, breaking down potential barriers to women achieving senior positions, or reducing childcare and commuting costs.

We’re determined to make working for us work for everyone. And that means it must work for families too

Because it’s smart

Ever heard of Parkinson’s Law? It’s the old adage that a task expands to fill the time allotted for its completion. The typical work week is a classic example. If an employee works 40 hours, undertakings will inevitably take at least that long to be completed. (Which may also explain why activities carried out just before a holiday are often finished in seemingly miraculous time.)

Then there’s the Pareto Principle, which states that 80% of outcome (in this case, productivity) is a product of 20% input (in this case, time or effort).

So, by prioritising hours logged over actual results, businesses may be doing a disservice to productivity (and their employees)

Because it’s better for our clients

What if we change the narrative? What if we emphasise working smarter not harder? If we place higher value on output over hours logged, it’s possible to achieve the same (if not better) results more agilely, freeing staff to do what’s important to them outside of the daily grind.

But it’s also a win for our clients. You’ll be collaborating with an energised, empowered and motivated Calibro team. One that is even more focused on your goals, and on delivering the exemplary quality of service for which we’re known.

Counting bums on seats isn’t good for the bottom line

The clue’s in our name – we hire based on calibre, and we manage based on trust. Everyone is measured by their output, not their hours. We want the days of ‘clocking in and clocking off’ to be a thing of the past. It’s about working smarter, not harder.

Because quality trumps quantity

Efficiency matters. Which is exactly why we’re able to trial this new approach – we’ve always focused our priorities on achieving the right results and we think we can still achieve this with a little more focus on using our time better.

But we believe – based on real-world evidence – that wellbeing days could move the needle yet further.

Forbes notes that happier and less stressed humans are more focused on their job when in the workplace. Improving mental health and increasing employee wellbeing then, isn’t just a ’nice-to-have’ (although this is of course, more than enough reason), rather, it’s directly proportional to boosted engagement and productivity.

There’s been recent success in Iceland regarding the 4-day work week; Microsoft Japan offices have witnessed a whopping 40% productivity rise as a result, and New Zealand’s Perpetual Garden observed an engagement level increase of 40% and an organisational commitment hike of 29%.

More productive and engaged team members mean no wasted resources – every minute counts and is passed on as valuable time to clients.

In other words, while the hours spent in the office may go down, the number of efficient hours will actually go up.

Because not all traditions should stand the test of time

The notion of working less may seem radical, but this isn’t modern society’s first reduced-working rodeo. Back in ye Industrial Revolution times, six-day, 100-hour weeks were the norm.

Today’s five-day, 40-hour iteration was popularised by Henry Ford in 1926 (incidentally, on a trial basis), eventually becoming the global standard once it was proven that despite reduced ‘time’ – and accidents – the output of workers remained the same.

If Ford’s mass production era took tentative steps towards a better work-life balance, the digital revolution marked the dawn of a new era. Technology has made it easier than ever to be flexible (and more efficient) in our work habits. The pandemic turned this potential into proof.

Calibro has always been forward-thinking in its approach to projects. And now, we’re extending that innovative mindset to our culture. So, we’re drawing a line in the sand and asking… has the time come? Is the five-day work week an outdated tradition that needs to be put to rest? We want to lead the charge in finding the answer.

Because it’s another step in a more sustainable direction

The four-day work week will lead to reduced overheads and costs for Calibro as a business (we hope) – which will in turn allow us to funnel more resources into R&D, services, training, and new projects.

But equally, less energy usage and commuting demands should also help to significantly reduce our carbon footprint, and feed into our forthcoming sustainability policy.

Because you never know unless you try

We recognise that this way of working isn’t suitable for all companies or all sectors. Which is why we’ll be running the scheme on a 12-month trial basis initially. We’ll be taking a practical and measured approach to ensure we’ll continue to reach our full potential as a business and meet our monthly targets.

But we have a feeling this could be the beginning of something beautiful…