Since the start of the pandemic, work-life balance has been all the rage, with remote work policies showing employees that there's more to life than staying in the office all day. While there are now a wide range of companies offering remote work as standard for employees, some businesses are taking it a step further by offering a much-anticipated perk: the four-day work week.
The impact of the four-day work week has been studied quite thoroughly, from small businesses to entire countries, and the results are almost universally positive. Improved productivity, better mental health, and higher revenue have been common among companies that have tested it out, with virtually every single participant in the experiment opting to stick with the four-day work week.
In this guide, we'll explain the four-day work week and its benefits, as well as provide you with a frequently updated list of tech companies currently offering the four-day work week to their employees.
What Is the 4-Day Work Week?
Unlike the majority of tech jargon, the four-day work week is pretty self-explanatory. Rather than working for the standard five days a week, employees at your business would only work four days a week. Pay would remain the same, but you would simply encourage your team to finish the same amount of work in less time.
While that may seem like a daunting task, research has found that employees are actually more productive and report feeling better about work too, which feels like a no-brainer for business owners. Still, decision makers haven't been as quick to adopt the new system as you'd think, particularly given the overwhelming data in favor of the change. In fact, a new study was recently released that further cements the potential value of the 4-day work week, with employees and employers alike reporting a wide range of benefits from increased revenue to better work-life balance.
“We think there is a lot here that ought to motivate other companies and industries to give it a try.” – David Frayne, a research associate at University of Cambridge, who worked on the study.
If you're interested in working for a company that offers the 4-day work week, we don't blame you. Fortunately, there are some companies that have gotten on board.
Companies That Offer the 4-Day Work Week
Whether you're considering implementing the four-day work week at your business or simply looking to find a job with a more flexible schedule, we've put together a list of tech companies that are currently offering some kind of four-day work week policy. Take a look at the list below and be sure to check back to see if any new companies have been added:
While not every employee at Amazon enjoys the four-day work week, the massive ecommerce retailer has been getting on the bandwagon as of late. Between October 2021 and March 2022, almost one third of job listings for Amazon mentioned offering a four-day work week. While that's a far leap from embracing the trend entirely, it does point to a growing trend in the business world.
You've likely heard of summer hours before, but Basecamp took it a step further and now offers summer weeks, in the form of a four-day work week from May 1st through August 31st every single year. Basecamp has actually been well ahead of the curve on this one, considering this policy has been in place since 2008. Still, we hope Basecamp will see the value of the shortened schedule every month of the year, but summertime is good enough for now.
In 2021, Bolt Financial tested the four-day work week for three months and the results were overwhelmingly positive. Rather than return to the old way of doing things, the company embraced change and adopted the four-day work week for all employees on January 1st, 2022. Bolt still encourages employees to work when they want, but they've made those four days a week “when you collaborate,” according to an interview with the founder, so meetings can't get in the way of a perfectly good Friday.
Buffer is always on the cutting edge of business trends, leading the charge on wage transparency. Well, in May 2020, the company made another decision to test out the four-day work week for employees with stellar results, with 91% stating they are happier and more productive after the shift, according to a Buffer employee survey. Now, the social media management company has fully implemented the policy for the foreseeable future.
“This 4-day workweek period is about well-being, mental health, and placing us as humans and our families first.” – Joel Gascoigne, CEO of Buffer
You won't just find new ideas on the pages of Kickstarter, as the fundraising company has been utilizing the four-day work week for months with excellent results. Like most companies, Kickstarter tested the policy before fully committing, and was shocked at how the four-day work week improved the bottom line of the company “through productivity gains that have resulted from staff finding smarter ways to work.”
Even big companies like Microsoft have to take note of productivity gains like the ones reportedly during four-day work weeks. At least, that was the case for Microsoft Japan, which tested out the policy in 2019 and never looked back due to a 40% increase in productivity. Sure, the US offices haven't followed suit just yet, but it's only a matter of time before businesses start recognizing that the four-day work week is the way forward.
Much like Microsoft, Panasonic also decided to test out the four-day work week in its Japan offices, and while results were excellent, the focus wasn't on the bottom line of the company, but rather the overall health and well-being of employees in the long term.
“We must support the wellbeing of our employees.” – Kusumi Yuki, CEO of Panasonic
Shopify isn't just the best ecommerce website builder on the market. It's also one of the companies offering employees a four-day work week during the summer. While the company has seen success in productivity with the four-day work week, it hasn't completely committed to providing its Canadian employees with the perk year-round.
As was the case with the majority of these companies, thredUP started off the four-day work week as an experiment to see if it had any real-life impact. Not only did it improve productivity, but thredUP CEO James Reinhart said that it also helped them attract top talent, with more than half of new hires noting the four-day work week is a primary driver in their decision to accept a position with the company.
“I think being a pioneer is never easy, but I think if you take a first principles approach to how do you design work, ultimately what you find is that employees who are well rested, engaged, happy and stable have longevity at the company.” – James Reinhart, CEO and co-founder of thredUP
A three-day weekend always sounds good, but not every company is taking the spirit of the four-day work week to heart. Toshiba is one of those companies, allowing employees to only work four days a week, but still requiring 40 hours per week. This makes for some pretty long hours during the week, but hey, at least you can enjoy those holiday weekends to the absolute fullest.
Finding Some Work-Life Balance
If you're looking for a little flexibility when it comes to your work schedule, we don't blame you. There are plenty of benefits for your workers and employers alike when it comes to easing back the workload of employees, which is why we've also created a guide listing the companies offering unlimited PTO, so your next vacation won't be at risk.
If you'd rather work from home, check out our guide to companies that offer remote positions.