According to lead researcher Juliet Schor, a sociologist and economist at Boston College who is monitoring over 180 organisations globally as they switch to truncated schedules through six-month pilot programmes, workers who shifted to 32-hour workweeks logged 7.58 hours per night of sleep, nearly a full hour more than when they were maintaining in the 40-hour workweeks.
In other words, they slept for almost seven of the eight hours they had gained back each week rather than running errands or interacting with friends.
“I wasn’t surprised that people are getting a little more sleep, but I was surprised at how robust the changes were,” Schor said. On four-day work schedules, the proportion of participants who reported being sleep deprived—defined as receiving less than 7 hours of sleep each night—declined from 42.6 per cent to 14.5 per cent.
Schor’s surveys of 304 employees at 16 companies (three with headquarters in the US, one in Australia, and 12 in Ireland) follow a series of international, six-month trials being conducted by a nonprofit group called 4 Day Week Global and come at a time when the pandemic has forced employers across industries to rethink how, where, and when work is completed.
Since the epidemic upended schedules and gave many workers a glimpse of how flexibility may enhance their lives, the idea of shorter workweeks is gaining popularity.
While demanding managers like Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Elon Musk of Tesla Inc. are urging staff members to resume their pre-pandemic schedules, other well-known figures are supporting shorter workweeks.
These four-day week trials are not always completed by the groups who start them. About one in five companies leave the programme, most often during the pre-planning phase. Executives who participated in the pilots claim that they confront the difficult task of eliminating needless labour in order to get the same results in four days in addition to the difficulty of overcoming employee and industry five-day standards.
The enormous improvement in sleep may appear contradictory to those who do. Why do workers who take Fridays off end up sleeping an extra hour every night of the week instead of engaging in hobbies, family time, and socialising?
According to Schor’s early data, research participants who worked four-day schedules experienced improvements in a range of wellbeing and productivity metrics, including life satisfaction and work-family balance, and she suggested that such outcomes may be tied to more sleep time.-(WION)