The Wellcome Trust has scrapped plans to move all staff to a four day working week, admitting it would be “too operationally complex to implement”. The biomedical research foundation had been considering trialling the dramatic shift in working patterns this autumn, giving all 800 of its London-based head office employees Fridays off without a reduction in pay. Had it adopted the policy, Wellcome, which is the world's second-biggest research donor after the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, would have become the largest organisation in the world to do so. But a three-month study found that the work of those employed in back office and support functions, such as IT, finance and human resources, would have been made much harder by the move. Other areas of the business more conducive to flexibility might have benefited by such a change but it was felt it was unfair to proceed, the Guardian reported. There was also concern that compressing a full-time job into a four-day week … [Read more...] about Wellcome Trust abandons plans for a four-day working week
Compressed work week
Working 9 to 5, Monday to Friday, is the main way to make a living for many workers, but should the working week change? A four-day working week has been mooted - with workers dropping a day, but working longer hours, reports Perspecs. Some argue that it should be the "fundamental aim of our economy", and it could address the inequality in the workplace. However, there could be health risks to the four-day week. The Claim Aidan Harper, a researcher at the New Economics Foundation, argues that a four-day working week could "help solve Britain’s inequality problem". Writing for the Guardian, he says that a four-day week - without a reduction in pay - would "drastically improve our economy and our society". Harper argues: "It should be seen as a fundamental aim of our economy, one that would directly address a range social justice issues including persistent economic and gender inequality." The debate around a four-day week has focused on the business case, but Harper wants to … [Read more...] about Is a four-day working week really possible?
For years, workers have resented the 40-hour working week. The iconic title track of Dolly Parton’s movie, now a high-profile West End musical, shines a light on these frustrations. “Working nine to five” is a byword for inflexibility, few prospects, and insufficient pay. But is the nine-to-five working week a thing of the past? According to a poll carried out by YouGov, only six per cent of employees are working the traditional hours of 9am to 5pm, and just 14 per cent would opt for those hours if given the chance. The survey also revealed that 42 per cent of respondents were already working according to shift patterns, compressed hours, and job shares. Many of these people told researchers that working flexible hours made them more motivated and led them to stay in the job longer. The workplace is certainly evolving. Today’s labour force is far more focused on work-life balance than previous generations. Unlike their work-hard, play-hard predecessors, … [Read more...] about Working nine to five – is it how we make a living?
0 Have your say With symptoms of chronic stress 40 per cent higher in women bringing up two children while holding down a full-time job, improving ourwork-life balance is a priority, writes Susan Dalgety. Tione leaned back in her chair. “I am tired a lot,” she smiled, surveying her desk full of files, her laptop gently humming.“My youngest is only a few months old. And the eldest is eight years, so there is a big gap. When I go home at night, around six, I go to bed at nine. And then back up at six,” she laughed, ruefully.Tione is a working mother. She is a finance manager, responsible for managing the budgets of 14 projects across Malawi. She works around 45 hours a week, then goes home to tend to her children.Every mother in Malawi works. Female staff fill the city offices and shops, supported by an army of female nannies and cleaners. Only the very rich live a life of leisure.In the rural areas, where the majority of Malawi’s 18 … [Read more...] about Time for a workers’ revolution to win a four-day week – Susan Dalgety
A "beautiful" mum-of-three died on Christmas Day just a week after giving birth - leaving her partner to be "mammy and daddy" to their children. Karen McEvoy, 24, was struck down by exhaustion, flu-like symptoms and severe back and abdominal pain in the days before she died last month. She is believed to have contracted sepsis before she went into cardiac arrest as doctors attempted to intubate her to help her breathe. Her final words to her distraught partner, Barry Kelly, were to ask him whether he had been crying and to say she would love him forever. Today, Barry, 26, can still recall the sounds of the compression pump on Karen's chest as she lay unresponsive in hospital in Co. Kildare, Ireland. As his partner slipped away, he held her hand and desperately told her she couldn't leave him, reminding her of their exciting plans for the future. "I went into her and I was talking to her," Barry, who has a newborn baby daughter and two "gorgeous" little boys with Karen, told the … [Read more...] about “Beautiful” mum-of-three, 24, dies on Christmas Day a week after giving birth