Business strategy

Is 4-Day Work Week the Future for IT, Bank Employees? Know How Companies are Adapting

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the world in many ways since its emergence in 2020, and work culture across the globe is one of the major sectors that has been impacted by it. Employers have been reimagining the workplace post-Covid, where the work from home regime is likely to modify into other forms, and a four-day work week might emerge as one of the results of it. 

Some companies, including those in India, have already shifted to a four-day work week to ensure a healthy work-life balance for their employees. San Francisco-based cybersecurity company TAC, which has its office in India, jumped on board seven months ago to boost productivity, according to reports. The company, located in Mumbai, closes on Fridays to ‘make workers happier and more productive’, according to a statement.

According to a report by CNBC, technology company Bolt became one of the newest organisations to shift to this new model globally. The report said that a campaign under 4 Day Week Global is also urging more employers to hop on to this model.

“We are changing the model of work away from measuring how long you are at the office, and moving that towards what are people actually producing and what outcomes are we trying to achieve over the course of the week,” CNBC quoted Joe O’Connor, global pilot program manager, 4 Day Week Global, as saying.

Not only this, many IT companies are also considering moving to the hybrid work culture where employees can work from home on certain days of the week, and from office on the others. India’s biggest IT employer Tata Consultancy Services or TCS has, in this regard, announced a 25×25 vision for the year 2025. Under this policy, only 25 per cent of TCS’ five lakh employees across the globe will be at their offices at any point of time, while associates will spend only 25 per cent of their time in the office. The company plans to co-locate only 25 per cent employees within each project under this plan, which came into the spotlight when Rajesh Gopinathan, CEO, TCS, talked about it while announcing the FY20 annual report of the company.

As far as four-day work week is considered, the Indian government also has plans to implement the policy across the country, reports suggest. New labour codes, set to be implemented in the near future, would allow companies to have the flexibility to reduce the number of working days to four per week,  Labour and Employment Secretary Apurva Chandra said in February according to media reports.

However, the working hours, which are fixed at 48 hours per week, will remain ‘sacrosanct’, the official had said. This means, in India, if the policy comes into place for the majority of the companies, employees will have to work for 12 hours a day.

The hybrid work model is another option employers are seriously considering. Not only TCS, but Google CEO Sundar Pichai also aims to make this the norm in the pod-Covid office scenario. In a letter to employees earlier in the year, stating that the company will follow a hybrid work model in the future. He had said this is a model wherein around 60 per cent of the employees would come together in the office a few days every week, another 20 per cent would work in new office locations, and the remaining 20 per cent would work from home.

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