4 Day Workweek: Is it worth to try this method or not?

Why the 4-day workweek might be better than the standard 5 | The ...

One year ago a company from New Zealand came with an interesting experiment. Employees were working only 4 days a week, 32 hours instead of 40 hours a week and they were paid the usual salary. According to the numbers from this study, the employees felt less stressed and their work-life balance improved. In addition, the job performance wasn’t affected by those missing hours, on the contrary, it slightly improved. Interesting, isn’t it? Many companies are trying to attract new employees and this is one of the advantages they can offer. So let’s look at the pros and cons of the 4-day workweek.

The fact that you work only 4 days a week doesn’t always mean that you work only 32 hours a week. In some countries, the employees can choose between 5 days with 8 hours at work or only 4 days but with 10 hours at work. This system works mostly in the United States but in some European countries, the workweek is a bit shorter. For example, in the Netherlands, most of the people work only 29 hours a week. In Denmark and Norway the workweek has approx 33 hours. While in Ireland, it’s 34 hours. So, in these countries, the 4-day workweek is totally possible.

pros

Now let’s talk about the advantages of the 4-day workweek. According to not only the New Zealand experiment but also to some other studies, productivity during the working hours increases to compensate for the missing day. Employees use their time much more effectively by spending less time on inefficient tasks or time-wasters like social media. With less stress and higher work-life balance, the satisfaction of employees grows. Also, their motivation and creativity increases and they engage better at their work. Also because of the focus on collective goals and the emphasis on efficiency the cooperation in a team needs to be better and it can bring the whole team closer together.

CONS

What about the difficulties of 4 days a week? The obvious risk for employers is, that workers won’t be able to fulfil their work tasks in a shorter time. So, it can become very costly for the whole company. It can be also very stressful for employees to manage to fit 5-day work into 4 days. Also, there are some industries which require a 24/7 presence and it is simply impossible for them to put 4 day week in practice. Another fact is, that majority of other people have to work 5 days a week. If you don’t have kids or family, the 5th day can be pretty lonely for you. That can also increase your guilt because everyone else is actually working. So you should rather find some activity, otherwise, you will feel very lazy and unproductive.

It’s safe to say that 4-day workweek is not for everyone but if you think that it could actually work at your company, test it out for some limited period of time and you will see if you and your team are able to accomplish more by working less.

If you are interested to hear more about international market research and data collection services please click here.

3 great things about having an international Virtual Assistant

Multitasking and everyday routine could be a real problem for many companies. In addition, especially growing companies. They should have a higher focus on their strategic goals and not waste their resources into everyday business operations. Furthermore, to level up your business and become a winner in the competitive environment, you should consider hiring a Virtual Assistant to outsource part of your daily tasks.

For example, here are 3 great things to share about hiring international Virtual Assistant with you:

1. Boost the productivity of your team

Don’t let your team burn out of routine work.  If you outsource monotonous and time-consuming tasks to your Virtual Assistant, you will save yr existing staff from over hours.

2. Build an international team and have a global footprint

With international Virtual Assistant you can expand your business and create an international network of employees. Moreover, you will find out new creative solutions and excel your multicultural awareness. Virtual Assistant allows scaling your business throughout the world in the most affordable way.

3. Hire less staff and reduce costs

In addition, to have an international Virtual Assistant means to choose a specialist among a great variety of remote workers all over the world. You can find a well-educated freelance employee or outsource a part of your tasks to a consulting company. Whichever you choose, there is an obvious benefit of saving money. Make a “result-based” contract and reducing costs on the office equipment for additional employees.

As well as, assuming foregoing we can conclude, that hiring international Virtual Assistant is a very effective solution for small and medium-sized companies. There are certain risks in delegating your duties. But if you find the right employee or company, you will enjoy the advantages of Assistant and get a return on investment faster than you expected.

Before you make a brave decision to contract out, consider reading some more insights on outsourcing that Katrium team prepared for you.

Clients and their importance to buy from you instead of your competitors

Picture represents ideas which appears for a better clients understandingHow often your clients become seduced of other companies? Let’s imagine a situation where Company A asks an offer from Company B for their services. First, company B sends their best possible offer to Company A. But eventually, they decide to buy the service that they need from Company C. 

In this kind of situation, you can either leave it or you can take a look at the whole picture.  One option is to ask Company A why they chose to buy from someone else instead. Clearing this out will help you to improve your business. Also, it can help you to bring Company A back when they notice that you care about your customers’ opinions. So, how do you make such enquiries politely and without getting the other party’s guard up? Here’s how:

WHY clients are important?

Customers are the ones who bring you the profit, not you or your staff. Understanding customers’ needs are essential. They not only bring the money to the company – but also give you an advantage over your competitors. No one else knows better than clients themselves what they want. And whoever does the best job of listening to their customers wins the market share.

Talking to and thanking customers who bought something from you is important, but asking “why” from the ones who did not buy from you should be at least at the same level. It could be that they did not like something. It could be the product, price, selection, customer service or maybe you did not interact with them enough. There are a million different reasons, but you cannot know for sure unless you ask. Assuming the main issues that caused it sends potential customers straight to your competitors’ door.

By asking the customers “could you please elaborate what was the reason that made you go for our competitor’s offer instead of us” will help you to meet customers’ needs and improve your own business. Of course, asking ten customers, who decided to not buy from you, and getting ten different answers will not lead anywhere, but if four or six out of the ten customers name the same issue, maybe you should take a look at that particular aspect of your business/offer and think what you could do differently, better. The more satisfied your customers are with your services and products, the more likely it is that they become your loyal customers and recommend you to their colleagues and partners.

SOLUTION

So, how should you ask this easy question from the customers who chose to go with the third option instead of your offer? The answer is easy. You need to ask them for feedback. But this takes time and effort. Also, you need to know how to ask the right questions. You do not want to waste your own or the customers’ time with irrelevant questions. It is not necessary to ask questions, that do not provide you with any further information and thus risk the chance of getting any responses at all. A good option would be to outsource the feedback process to an external survey company. The company that has the resources to create a survey with relevant questions that fit your company’s needs and make the interviews with the customers who slipped away from you.

RECOMMENDATIONS

You could create your own online survey. Surveys like that give a chance to the current as well as potential clients to decide when they want/can answer. The survey could be sent to them by email or you can set it up into your website where everyone can complete it whenever they want to give you feedback or explain what qualities they look for in a cooperation partner.

But if you want to ensure a larger number of answers and to reach people directly then phone interviews are a better option. Making a phone call to your customers has higher survey response rate than online surveys. What could be a better way to find out what your current customers, as well as the lost customers, think about your company and your ways of doing things than by talking to them? On the phone, you can ask follow-up questions from the respondents. It helps you to get a better overview of their thoughts and ideas. That way you get more detailed responses which can help you to have a clearer idea of how you are doing as a company.

However, all of us know that most of the companies do not have enough time to call all the clients that chose to go for another company’s offer instead of yours. This is the point when research and consulting company steps in and asks the questions for you. Outsourcing the service to the specialist in this field saves you time and gives you high-quality analyses. All you need to do is to let the specialists do the work for you.

Katrium offers its customers a set of tools to perform reliable customer service. Read more about our services here.