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posted by janrinok on Wednesday January 12, @08:17PM   Printer-friendly

Panasonic is introducing an optional four-day work week:

Panasonic is reportedly introducing an optional four-day work week for employees, allowing its workers to spend less time working and more time actually enjoying being alive. It's one more small push toward a better world where shorter working weeks are the norm.

Announced during an investor briefing on Friday, Panasonic will offer its workers a third day off per week, with Panasonic CEO Kusumi Yuki noting they may opt to further their studies, volunteer, or even work a side job. Last year, Japan's annual economic policy guidelines revealed the country would encourage employers to adopt four-day work weeks.

"We must support the wellbeing of our employees," said Kusumi, as reported by Nikkei Asia.

Hoping to facilitate better work-life balance in its workforce, the electronics manufacturer is also increasing flexibility by allowing more employees to work from home, and giving them the freedom to turn down job transfers that require them to move. It isn't clear whether these new policies will apply to all employees globally, nor whether hours or compensation will be adjusted to offset workers' reduced days.

Would you prefer a 4 day working week?


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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 12, @08:32PM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 12, @08:32PM (#1212203)

    At this point in my life I'd be on board with 4 x 10's rather than 5 x 8's. I don't think I would notice the two extra hours a day, especially since they would bump me more out of the prime commuting hours resulting in shorter commute times. So I don't think the two extra hours ends up being two extra hours to me, perhaps more like an extra hour and a half. If it was a choice between 5 x 8's or 4 x 10's, but being compensated at 4/5th of my salary, I'd have to think about it. Ten years ago I wouldn't want to trade the pay cut for the extra day, but it might be much more appealing now (I'm in the latter stages of my working career).

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by NateMich on Wednesday January 12, @11:37PM

    by NateMich (6662) on Wednesday January 12, @11:37PM (#1212245)

    I don't think I would notice the two extra hours a day

    I used to think that. I was wrong.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by srobert on Thursday January 13, @01:49AM (1 child)

    by srobert (4803) on Thursday January 13, @01:49AM (#1212281)

    I'm working 4-10's now. Have been for years. We should have been on a much shorter work week many years ago, according to early 20th century economists, but I still like it better than 5-8's.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 13, @07:31PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 13, @07:31PM (#1212492)

      Plus it's less driving to and from work, less preparation time to start and end tasks.

      I think there are studies that show it takes time to start a task before you begin getting efficient at it and then it probably takes time to finish/close it off for a period until the next iteration. Perhaps working longer on a task fewer times saves time by reducing that inefficient pre and post buffering time or the amount of times you have to pre and post buffer.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 13, @07:28PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 13, @07:28PM (#1212490)

    but they have to be three consecutive days off ...