Four-day week workers face huge pay cuts

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Only a tiny number of companies plan to reduce hours while maintaining pay

Four-day week workers face huge pay cuts

Workers moving to a four-day week are facing big wage cuts as only 1pc of companies plan to offer full pay for reduced hours.

A third of companies expect most workers to be on a four-day week within the next 10 years, new research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has revealed.

However, the survey revealed that only a tiny number of companies plan to reduce hours while maintaining pay.

A tenth of firms said they have cut working hours without slashing pay while only 1pc of companies said they would move to a shorter week and maintain staff wages.

A number of countries and companies are trialling a four-day working week with the idea rising in popularity, particularly on the Left. But there are major concerns that any boost to productivity will not offset the losses to output.

Jonathan Boys, economist at the CIPD, said: “The major sticking point is the need to increase productivity by a whopping 25pc to make up for the output lost from fewer days of work.



“This point came through in our findings with a majority of employers saying they would need to work smarter and adopt new technology in order to reduce working hours without cutting pay.”

CIPD found that 32pc of firms said a four-day week would not suit all of their staff while 30pc said they would be unable to achieve the same volume of output.

More than two thirds of workers said they are happy with working hours compared to 31pc who wanted to do fewer hours. However, only 11pc would take a pay cut for fewer hours.

Mr Boys said the “rationale behind the move for the four-day week is a positive one” but warned that the cost of living crisis could challenge the push.

“People may very well look to increase their hours to boost their income,” he said.

A major trial in the UK being run by the 4 Day Week campaign found that most planned to keep the shorter working hours when the six-month experiment ended. Around 86pc of respondents in a trial of more than 70 firms planned to keep the four-day week.

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