4-Day Working Week Update – What day is it?
If you’ve been seen much of our blog or social recently, you’ve probably heard that Amplitude is taking part in the UK’s first 4-day working week trial. We’ve reduced the days we work each week with no change in pay for our employees, evaluating whether we can be just as effective (or even more effective) working one day less.
We’ve maintained from the start that we should be totally transparent about our experience if we’re to be of benefit to the research happening alongside the trial, so here we are publishing it on the internet forever.
What is the 4-day working week trial?
For those who aren’t aware, 70 UK companies are participating in the biggest ever global trial of the 4 day working week. That’s over 3,000 staff members in total. All of this is supported by the 4 Day Week think tank as well as Boston and Cambridge universities. The study tracks our productivity, output, turnover, staff wellbeing, and mental health.
The idea behind the trial is that working fewer hours can actually see productivity either remain constant or increase, and that team wellbeing and mental health improves. Amplitude’s workplace culture is already fairly healthy, but we know we’re not perfect and welcome any opportunity to improve things for our staff.
How’s the 4-day working week trial going?
At the end of month 2, we’re looking back and taking stock of how things have gone. Laying our cards on the table, we’ve definitely had some workflow and project management hiccups. They’ve not affected delivery for our clients, but there have been a few times when we’ve lost track of a project’s status and who’s doing what. Thankfully, we noticed this early and the answer was simple: we ran another process and project management training session to refresh how best to keep on top of things.
These teething problems – while not fun to deal with – are to be expected with any big workplace change. Training and learning is continuous, and working practices are only truly integrated once they have been put into place, tweaked, reinforced and revisited. And it’s imperative that all of this is accompanied with explanations as to why we are working this way, so people can understand why they’re being asked to do things differently.
Alongside the 4-day working week trial, we’ve also leaned into peer-to-peer learning and sharing. We’ve now added a 15-minute learning session to the end of our big Monday morning meeting, giving anyone who wants to the opportunity to share something. This could be a way they’ve found to be more productive at work, Adobe shortcuts, creative tools they’ve made, something cool they’ve done or learned outside work, even just something they’re interested in. It’s all interesting and good for staff morale, and you never know what’s going to spark ideas that improve our client work.
How do our staff feel?
It’s important though, that we aren’t just looking at how the company is performing, but also how our staff feel. We want to know what’s working and what’s not, and we’re familiar enough with agile to know that something perfect on paper doesn’t always translate in practice. Here’s a look at what the team thinks:
How do our clients feel?
Client side, it’s all been smooth sailing. The internal hiccups have been handled without us missing any client milestones or deliveries, so we’ve had no complaints. The opposite, in fact, as several have praised us for taking this step and being part of the trial.
That’s also true of potential new clients as well. We’ve been open about the trial in new business meetings, as it wouldn’t be fair to spring this on them once the work is won.
Generally, everyone has been really supportive and encouraging. Most people want this to succeed (we reckon they’d be keen to see their own companies implement it too!)
What’s more, all this work driving efficiency has meant we have scope for growth and are ready to bring new in projects, and that’s after being at capacity and turning down work at the start of the year.