OPEN APP
Home / News / World /  This country asks firms to move to 4-day workweek to improve work-life balance

This country asks firms to move to 4-day workweek to improve work-life balance

Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said with the implementation of the four-day working week, companies would be able to retain capable and experienced staff. (AFP)Premium
Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said with the implementation of the four-day working week, companies would be able to retain capable and experienced staff. (AFP)

  • The four-day workweek has been steadily gaining ground globally amid the Covid pandemic
  • From New Zealand, Germany to Spain, several countries tried to experiment with more flexible working hours

Japan has asked companies to start a four-day workweek as part of the government's initiative to improve the nation's work-life balance.

In the recent economic policy guidelines, the Japanese government suggested companies and employers allow their staff to opt to work four days a week instead of the typical five days.

Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said with the implementation of the four-day working week, companies would be able to retain capable and experienced staff who might otherwise have to leave if they are trying to raise a family or take care of elderly relatives.

According to the government, a four-day workweek would also encourage more people to gain additional educational qualifications or even take on side jobs in addition to their regular employment.

Most importantly, authorities hope that an extra day off every week would encourage people to go out and spend, thereby boosting the economy.

The latest guidelines by the Japanese government would gradually put an end to the county's notoriously intense corporate culture, or Karoshi.

Japan coined the term "karoshi", which means 'death from overwork'– a word invented in the 1970s to describe deaths caused by work-related stresses and pressures.

However, the coronavirus pandemic has led to a significant shift in how companies operate, with many companies adopting a 'work from home culture.

The four-day workweek has been steadily gaining ground globally amid the Covid pandemic.

From New Zealand, Germany to Spain, several countries tried to experiment with more flexible working hours. Spain announced earlier this year that it would experiment with a four-day workweek.

In December last year, Unilever New Zealand rolled out a one-year experiment in which it allowed 81 of its employees to work four-day workweeks at the same salary to see the impact on productivity and work-life balance.

Subscribe to Mint Newsletters
* Enter a valid email
* Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter.

Never miss a story! Stay connected and informed with Mint. Download our App Now!!

Close
×
Edit Profile
My ReadsRedeem a Gift CardLogout