A 4.5 day working week – the Pixel Fridge trial

It’s no secret that we care about making Pixel Fridge a great place to work.

Being a small company has all sorts of benefits, and our latest decision to introduce a 4.5 working day week trial shows we are putting our money where our mouth is.

We all know that there is an awful lot of noise at the moment surrounding the 4 day working week. It is fascinating to consider that even with all of the advances in technology there hasn’t been a shift from the traditional 5 day working week in the UK since the 1930s when this was introduced. Looking back at the patterns and behaviours for its introduction, it does feel like we are heading in that direction – at least for now. With the current 4 day working week trial underway in the UK and some countries now running to a formal 4.5 day working week, we thought it was time to introduce something similar as a trial at Pixel Fridge.

Monitor and measure

Now, the most important thing to say is that this is a trial. As a management team, we are going to be monitoring and measuring the impact of this trial very closely. The main areas that we want to focus on in our reporting will be:

  • Productivity
  • Wellbeing
  • Financials

Whilst I won’t go into the ins and outs of our monitoring and measuring techniques (but do ask if you’re interested), the long story short is that if we see no impact on our client work, the business outputs, and (hopefully) an uptick in wellbeing then we plan to implement this as part of our full time contracts.

Our planned two month trial means that we should have sufficient evidence to see the overall impact. If we feel this trial period needs lengthening to see the true consequences then we plan to do that too before committing to such a big shift.

Quality and productivity

As an agency, we aspire to do the best work we can at the competitive prices that we know we can achieve. Clichéd, but true. We’re confident however that our values and case studies back this up.

In implementing a 4.5 day working week, we don’t want to see any downturn in the quality of work that we produce. If we are to believe the research carried out in the world so far, we are confident that our quality will be maintained (if not improved) and the productivity of us as an agency will hopefully stay the same, if not increase.

Wellbeing for our team

We want Pixel Fridge to be a great place to work. One of the driving factors behind introducing this trial is to make sure that we are looking after our team. Wellbeing is always front of mind and by reducing our working hours we hope to give our team more time back to live their lives. We are very lucky to have such an amazing team of individuals and we want everyone to gain time back in their life to see family, friends, further their interests and education, learn a language or just sit in the paddling pool with an ice cold drink.

Everyone is different. By releasing time back from the working week, rather than organising more company get togethers (our lovely rambles), we are opening up the opportunity for our team members to do more of what they love away from work.

If we do introduce this formally, we don’t plan on reducing any of the benefits or pay that our staff currently receive. This is a new ‘perk’ and not something that we can offer to our team and substitute for other ‘perks’, thus balancing out this new offering. Monitoring and measuring our financials will obviously enable us to make these decisions based on data and output – rather than this just being a nice thing for us to do (which it is too)!

Looking after our clients

As an agency we do have ongoing support contracts and we obviously want to be there for all of our clients when and should they need us. Being a small team, we are already very flexible and this trial won’t take that away. Whilst the 4.5 day working week is the plan, we have been very honest with our team and they are all aware there may be instances where we need some support on top of the 4.5 days to fulfil our workload or contracts that we have in place.

Honestly, we are confident that our clients will see an improved service and output from the team. Should this need monitoring and changing in the future then we as a leadership team will do just that.

To summarise

We’re really excited to announce this trial and welcome any questions on the learning that we experience. In October, we will write a follow up article to conclude the findings from our trial and announce the formal outcomes.

Nick Murray

Nick Murray

Director of Operations