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4 Is the Magic Quantity as Atom Proclaims 4 Day Work Week’s Viability in Fintech


In November 2021, Atom financial institution took a progressive lead in reshaping the way forward for work, turning into the primary UK financial institution, to maneuver all workers to a four-day working week, with no change of wage. The change in tradition was met with some criticism, nonetheless, six months down the road, Atom continued implementation of this rule has been discovered profitable. So we determined to ask the fintech business, is the four-day working week the longer term? Or has Atom’s success been an anomaly? 

Atom made the shift in recognition of individuals having longer working lives, the optimistic influence of know-how, versatile working and the necessity to stay and work extra sustainably. The implementation of a four-day week aimed to help worker psychological and bodily wellbeing, enabling folks to get pleasure from a more healthy work/life steadiness, whereas concurrently bettering ranges of enterprise efficiency.

Preliminary responses to a four-day work week

5 months after Atom’s large transfer, on the AltFi Competition of Finance, the subject of four-day working weeks was as soon as once more dropped at the fore on a panel, with Karen KerriganMoneybox chief working officer; Tom Morisse, technique and planning affiliate, folks, SpenDeskFederico Travella, CEO, Novicap and Sam Perry, strategic alliances director, Globalization Companions.

Throughout the dialogue, Travella mentioned: “I personally disagree with the four-day working week,” declaring it was loads simpler for greater corporations to introduce. He mentioned it in some instances it had been launched as a instrument to maintain maintain of workers and that it may show problematic if there was a excessive workload and never sufficient workers to handle the workload.

“I don’t understand how sensible it’s within the long-term, particularly for top progress companies,” he mentioned.

Kerrigan additionally expressed issues about it, saying that she thought companies is likely to be introducing it in some instances to stop workers from leaving. Nevertheless, not all of the panellists agreed with this sentiment as Perry identified many organisations in Dubai had launched the four-day work week with very optimistic responses.

Referred to as into query… once more

The dialogue surrounding the legitimacy of a four-day work week within the fintech area has continued for months, however as extra organisations have trialled it and extra have discovered flaws with it, the fourday week has as soon as once more hit the headlines. Nevertheless, Atom financial institution’s profitable implementation reveals there’s hope for the four-day work week, and trying to drive dwelling the purpose even additional, Atom listed the advantages of an additional day without work:

Impression on workers

One goal of the introduction of a four-day week was to draw and retain expertise extra successfully and information reveals this has been successful. There was a 49 per cent enhance in functions for roles at Atom in January 2022, in comparison with January 2021, and headcount has grown from 461 in November 2021 to 480 in June 2022, thanks additionally to a discount within the variety of departures. This has been important, with the struggle for expertise turning into fiercely aggressive following the widespread adoption of hybrid working following the pandemic.

Opposite to a lot of the scepticism across the shift, worker surveys reveal that the majority (91 per cent) folks can accomplish every little thing they should in 4 days. It’s also encouraging to see that worker productiveness on the financial institution has improved, with almost all (92 per cent) folks stating that they’ve discovered efficiencies in how they work because of the shorter week. This has included streamlining processes and dealing extra collaboratively inside their groups to make sure duties are accomplished.

Productiveness ranges have additionally been measured by every division in relation to enterprise outcomes. These metrics are particular to every of the ten departments inside Atom and measure productiveness by way of enterprise efficiency and repair to clients. For instance, in Operations, 10 metrics are measured, together with service ranges and electronic mail responses to clients. The info collated for the six months to April reveals that throughout the entire 165 departmental metrics tracked, the success fee has in reality improved for the reason that introduction of a four-day working week.

Staff are clearly extra motivated working a four-day week too. Nearly all (92 per cent) report that they look ahead to work, and there was a major (13 per cent) 12 months on 12 months enhance in folks engagement in February 2022 in comparison with February 2021 when workers had been final surveyed. Days misplaced to illness have additionally declined for the reason that introduction of the brand new working construction, dropping from 100 within the month of November 2021, to 72 in June 2022.

Impression on customer support

Probably the most crucial metrics related to a four-day week is the potential influence it has on the extent of service a enterprise is ready to present. Since its introduction, there has in reality been a optimistic influence on customer support, with Atom’s Belief Pilot rating growing from 4.54 initially of the brand new working construction to a formidable 4.82 in June 2022.

Moreover, buyer goodwill has elevated from 83.1 per cent in November 2021 to 85.8 per cent in June this 12 months. Alongside this, there has additionally been a slight discount in buyer complaints, down from 79 complaints in the course of the month of November 2021 to 73 complaints throughout April 2022.

Trade’s response – is 4 the magic quantity?

Anne-Marie Lister, Chief Folks Officer at Atom, mentioned: “Over six months on from introducing our new four-day working week, it’s clear that it has been an enormous success for our enterprise and our folks. We’re extraordinarily happy with how our workers have tailored and the profit it has dropped at many.

“Persons are rightly on the lookout for a more healthy work/life steadiness, and regardless of warnings from some sceptics, our metrics and other people surveys present that this has not had a unfavorable influence on workers or customer support. The truth is, it has been the alternative, with happier, extra environment friendly, and extra productive people who find themselves much more pushed to assist us change banking for the higher.

“Transferring to a four-day week has meant a elementary shift in our working mannequin and dealing apply. We didn’t anticipate that it could be straightforward, and knew there can be challenges alongside the way in which. That’s why we’ve adopted the mindset that we have to work exhausting to beat these difficulties with a purpose to make the shift work. Our enterprise and other people have benefited from this persistence, which is definitely required if you’re to problem conventional methods of working which were in place for nearly 100 years.

“We firmly consider the four-day week is the way forward for working life and it’s encouraging to now see the vary of companies throughout the UK embracing the four-day week trials. We’re a progressive financial institution and a progressive employer, and our expertise in planning for and shifting to a four-day week has proven that it’s potential for companies to do that and produce large advantages to their folks.

“We consider most organisations can transfer to a four-day week and we hope Atom’s experiences will encourage extra companies to make the shift completely.”

Joe Ryle, director of the 4 Day Week Marketing campaign, mentioned: “Atom financial institution’s expertise reveals {that a} four-day week with no lack of pay is a win-win for employees and employers.

“Firms ought to embrace the four-day week as a manner of boosting productiveness, bettering wellbeing and to assist with job retention.

“The 9-5, 5 day working week is outdated and now not match for goal.”

Lissele Prat, COO and founder at Capitalixe, the funds and banking resolution, mentioned: “Though we aren’t but on the four-day workweek, we’ve just lately carried out a 4.5-day workweek, so everybody finishes at lunch time on Fridays.

“In all honesty, I used to be sceptical at first as I used to be apprehensive that there can be a drop in productiveness, particularly since our enterprise is absolutely distant, however the outcomes have been fairly the alternative.

“Occasions are altering quickly, and for the fintech sector to proceed evolving we additionally have to adapt to new methods of working to draw and retain prime expertise. This implies having extra flexibility within the office which is a key space Gen Z and younger millennials getting into the workforce worth probably the most when job searching.

“To present you correct insights on this, I additionally requested two of my group members how they had been discovering it, and these had been the precise feedback they mentioned to me:

  • “To me it seems like each week I’ve a mini vacation. This enables me to spend my time doing issues I like akin to stroll outdoor, spending extra high quality time with my household, and even exit for a staycation someplace within the UK and even overseas.”
  • “For me it’s truthfully been fantastic! I’m a single mum with two youngsters so it may be fairly hectic and overwhelming at mines so it’s so nice to have a free Friday afternoon! Makes such a distinction to the weekend. I’m actually grateful for this!”

“I’m additionally a real believer that for my group to carry out at their finest, in addition they have to really feel their finest, and this reveals within the enhance in productiveness that’s occurred these previous couple of months.

“So, there you might have it, the outcomes communicate for themselves, we’ve a rise in productiveness and my group are loads happier. It’s a win/win scenario for me!”

“Staff are actually, greater than ever, re-evaluating how work suits into life, not the opposite manner round. Employers who actually worth the entire worker personally and professionally will win out vs those who don’t. Perks like a 4-day work week is in keeping with what prime expertise is on the lookout for – true work/life flexibility.” mentioned, Dasle Hong, senior supervisor, employer model and recruitment advertising, DailyPay, the payroll service supplier.

CEO of Theta World Advisors, Chris Biggs, mentioned: “In as we speak’s job atmosphere, having a versatile work schedule is essential for each attracting and retaining the most effective expertise, particularly within the fintech sector. For many corporations although, that is in relation to flexibility surrounding when workers can begin or end work, fairly than eradicating an entire day from the weekly calendar. Nevertheless, there’s actual momentum rising behind the four-day work week motion, with the largest pilot worldwide presently taking place within the UK.

“Early experiences would counsel that the findings are going to be optimistic, and this will likely trigger different corporations to observe go well with. Nevertheless, there are questions surrounding whether or not productiveness will likely be affected and likewise if congesting the total workload of 5 days right into a four-day week will even have the alternative impact its meant to and trigger employee burnout. It’s essential to contemplate these components earlier than implementation as all organisations have completely different wants – I’m certain for some companies a four-day week would work very well, and for others in no way.”

  • Francis is a journalist with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist curiosity in North and South America.

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