Four-day work week confirmed for these Aussies: ‘Win-win’
Oxfam Australia workers will work 30 hours a week and receive full-time pay.
Oxfam Australia has agreed to give its workers a four-day work week at full pay, following a landmark enterprise bargaining agreement.
The deal, which was secured by the Australian Services Union (ASU), will apply to 90 per cent of Oxfam’s 97 full-time and 37-part-time employees in Australia.
Under the agreement, permanent full-time employees working 35 hours per week can choose to have their weekly hours and entitlements varied to 30 hours per week over four days without losing any of their pay.
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Permanent part-time employees will have their working hours and entitlements pro-rated against a full-time load of 30 hours.
Oxfam will conduct a six-month pilot, which will be reviewed throughout. After this time, and subject to consultation with the union, the not-for-profit has committed to considering a permanent introduction of the four-day work week.
This is the first such arrangement affecting full-time employees in Australia to be formalised with an enterprise bargaining agreement.
ASU Victorian Private Sector Branch secretary Imogen Sturni said the trial was a “win-win” for Oxfam and its staff.
“It is pleasing to see Oxfam publicly recognising that productivity comes in different forms, and that work-life balance is essential for workers’ mental and physical health,” Sturni said.
“The rigid Monday-to-Friday, five-day working week is a thing of the past and no longer serves the modern workplace or its employees, particularly workers with caring responsibilities.”
It follows the findings from the world’s largest four-day-work-week trial in the UK. The trial, which involved about 3,300 people across a range of businesses, found there was a boost in productivity and employee’s health and well-being. Some businesses also reported an increase in revenue.
A recent senate committee report called on the federal government to introduce a four-day-work-week trial based on the 100:80:100 model. This is where staff retain 100 per cent of their salary, while reducing their hours to 80 per cent and maintaining 100 per cent productivity.
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