It’s been studied long enough for its efficacy to not be questioned, even put it in practice in New Zealand, Iceland, and Spain to be met with immense success. Yes, we’re talking about four-day work weeks. And the UAE is the latest to join the game.
Whilst 40 working hours per week remains the norm around the globe, the UAE announced that it will be making the pivot for federal workers in the country to work four-and-half days. The move, according to studies, can increase productivity up to 40 percent.
The gulf nation will also pivot to change its weekends. Friday, which was previously off, will now be cut short into a half day, with Saturday and Sunday as weekends; aligning with the weekend model used around the globe. Having half of Fridays off will allow the nation to continue to adhere to Muslim religious services.
With the new model in effect, the work week will be shortened to 36.5 hours, and will arguably increase productivity and allow for a more favorable work-life balance for workers in the Emirates. The move comes after decades of advocation of short work weeks, which have been proven to be effective in places where it has been trialed, namely Iceland, which had cut down working hours in 2015.
Throughout the trial, which lasted until 2019, the nation did not witness any negative changes in productivity. Workers reported a healthier work environment, with less stress. We can only hope to see the same results right here in the UAE.