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This Aussie company tried the 4-day week - here's what workers said

People commuting to work in Melbourne
Many argue the four-day week is more productive. (Source: Getty)

Workers around the world are captivated by the idea of scoring an extra day to themselves to enjoy their hobbies, spend more time with family and catch up on sleep.

Workers are in the mood for change. The right to a four-day work week has already been enshrined in Belgian law, and a massive trial of the shorter week is currently underway in the UK.

A couple of Australian companies have jumped on the trend early, in a bid to attract and retain high performers in the war for talent.

Debt-recovery fintech InDebted launched its four-day work week policy in October, hoping to attract high performers and generally improve the lives of its workforce.

It’s been a resounding success, if a staff survey is to be believed. Here’s what InDebted employees had to say about a shorter week.

An extra day for chores

For working mother Erin Delattre, having an extra day of the week to do mundane tasks such as grocery shopping, laundry and going to doctor appointments meant there was also time to kick back at the weekend.

“Knowing I have a day to tackle my to-do list makes me committed to working efficiently and lets me spend quality time with my family on the weekends without worrying about all the things I 'should' be doing,” she said.

An extra day for time-consuming hobbies

Lawyer Valentina De Giorgis was a big fan of the four-day work week because it gave him more time to follow creative pursuits.

“With the four-day work week I had the chance to dedicate a full day to writing and painting, which not only makes me happy but has also improved my work significantly,” he said.

An extra day to travel further

Jackie Mucha loved having an extra day to travel.

“I enjoy travelling more because I have the freedom of a longer weekend to go explore,” she said.

“It's amazing how much more relaxed and motivated I am when I come back to the office on Monday morning.”

An extra day for family and friends

Greg Clapp liked having more time to socialise.

“The four-day week has become an outright powerful tool that allows me even more flexibility when I need to work, and taking time for myself, or my family,” he said.

An extra day for cats

For Jennifer Heinzl, the four-day week meant she had more time to volunteer at a cat-rescue organisation.

“It's been great to be able to volunteer more of my time and services, truly making an impact in helping save stray and orphaned cats,” she said.

Any downsides?

One employee mentioned longer working days Monday to Thursday, and more late meetings to accommodate other time zones.

However, these concerns were considered a small price to pay for greater flexibility and autonomy.

“At the end of the day, I guess it is a question of implementing a modern management style based on trust towards the employees rather than just controlling them,” Noelia Perez said.

“And the bottom line is that motivation is very high indeed, which has a positive impact, both on efficiency and engagement.”

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