german companies embrace four day work week in bold bid to boost productivity and address labor crisis
German companies are trying something new to tackle their labor crisis and boost the economy: a four-day work week. Starting on February 1, a six-month test will give hundreds of employees an extra day off each week without cutting their pay.
Companies in Germany are trying a shorter way to check if it can make employees happy and comfortable.This is how they will make them more productive.
Sören Fricke who is a co-founder of Solidsense, a company in the test, believes in the idea of “new work. They say it can make employees feel better and more motivated. This is how they can be more active in work. This experiment is part of a larger trending move in Germany.there’s not enough skilled workers and high prices are making employees ask for better pay and conditions.
Ongoing fights between workers and bosses, such as a six-day strike by train drivers and a construction group wanting more money, indicate that there’s a lot of tension between employers and employees.
The idea of a four-day work week is not new, as other countries like the US, Canada, the UK, and Portugal have tried it with positive results—better physical and mental health for workers and less burnout.
Belgium made the four-day work week optional in 2022, and Japan is also encouraging shorter work weeks to address economic and demographic challenges. German companies in the experiment hope to see similar positive results. Some workers even plan to share data, like hair samples and fitness watch information, to track stress levels accurately.
Jan Bühren, co-founder of Intraprenör, a Berlin consultancy involved in the test, says the success of a four-day work week depends on flexibility and creativity within companies. Even though this new way of working might not be suitable for everyone or every type of job, the aim is to find out where and how it can make workplaces healthier and more productive.