Five day or Six day week

While many organizations are now catching up with the trend or allowing their employees to work for five days a week, there are still some that feel that bringing the week down to 5 days brings down employee productivity.

One CEO of an organization says they follow the five day week and prefer it that way to focus on higher employee productivity and efficiency, than hours spent doing a particular job.

Organizations that have followed this norm swear by its efficacy and say they prefer it this way as they want their employees to get the much deserved break from the hectic work routine. The five day work week gives employees the necessary break from a demanding work environment and thus is a bigger draw when compared to a six day work week. They recognize and appreciate the importance of work life balance and thus prefer the Monday – Friday work cycle. Though this concept was once acceptable in the old economy, it has become a point of controversy now. This is largely because IT companies which follow the new people driven economy believe in investing in the well being of their employees and work life balance as become a critical complement to the success of professionals at the work place.

Most industry experts say that if there is a need to finish an assignment on a short deadline, they encourage their employees to come in on the weekends and complete the desired assignment. Many professionals sometimes come to work on Saturdays despite company policy, to complete pending assignments amongst others.

Productivity matters: The most important thing for an organization to be successful is to meet the desired results. However, organizations have realized that tough work is important, so are the employees and that their personal lives should not be hampered by excessive work. To help their employees get this work life balance, organizations have lesser working days working only five days a week. Some opine that this will hamper progress. While many think so experts say that this thought is irrelevant and only mindset as work gets done at its own time.

Productivity requires good planning and time management skills. If people set longer timelines to complete work, they tend to stretch. When there is lesser time, the same work can get done sooner also.

In the IT industry, productivity is state of mind while you are working. You can’t have better productivity, given the circumstances with six days working over a long period of time. Of course, there are project deadlines and to meet them employee do have to put in that extra effort on short term basis.

Work and productivity depends on business requirement and planning. If there is a sudden situation that demands that switch, it should be done, if it is a practice, set as a result of trying to do things in a rush, at the last minute, due to inadequate planning, it only stresses employees. That, in any case reduces productivity.

Many IT companies across the globe work only on weekdays as they find it mutually beneficial for them as no business takes place during the weekends. It’s better not to keep on switching between five – six working days. Rather than doing so, they can keep a five-day week constant and pitch for benefits on coming into work on weekends. Our experience with employees is that they are responsible enough when it comes to coming in on weekends if they need to work, without being forced to by company policies.

While many organizations believe in taking different stands, for employees it’s a whole different ball game. Experts say that most employees prefer choosing an employer who gives them those two days of leave as compared to just having the Sunday off. They say that it helps the employees to strike a work life balance and spend sometime with their families and their wards. We no longer have jobs that are typically nine to five. Due to global set ups and different working zones, the whole week, irrespective of what time the office gets over, people tend to carry their work with them. That gives them hardly any time for themselves/families on week days.

Employees have strong family commitment with parents or children. A 6-day working model takes a toll on family’s emotional and relational wellbeing. The new people driven economy offers far more options to balance work and home life It is time that employers take advantage of these flexible options while re-establishing a healthy balance in employees’ personal and professional life.

Five days of work put in by an individual with a relaxed mind is more productive than six days of work put in by an exhausted mind. And time away on the weekend gives the employees a chance to have time to pursue other interests. Employees feel more relaxed and when a new week begins they come in refreshed and energetic.

In the end, experts contend that with a five day week organizations add more value to the employees’ life. While, it is a matter of company policy, in this day and age of people centric organizations, HR managers need to grab every opportunity to make Monday mornings something to look forward to.

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