Okay, so the four day work week isn't a new concept, but it is gaining traction and popularity. A four day working week, where employees work four eight hour days instead of the traditional five, has gained traction in recent years as a way to improve work-life balance, increase productivity, and reduce burnout. Here are some reasons why a four day working week could be a good idea:
Improved work-life balance: One of the main benefits of a four day working week is that it gives employees an extra day off to pursue personal interests, spend time with family and friends, or simply relax and recharge. This can lead to increased happiness and well-being, which can in turn improve job satisfaction and productivity.
Increased productivity: There is evidence to suggest that working longer hours does not necessarily equate to increased productivity. In fact, studies have shown that after a certain point, productivity can start to decline due to fatigue and burnout. By cutting down the number of working days, employees have more time to rest and recuperate, which can lead to increased productivity on the days that they do work.
Reduced burnout: Burnout is a state of chronic mental and physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It can lead to a range of negative outcomes, including decreased productivity, increased absenteeism, and even physical health problems. By giving employees an extra day off, organisations can help reduce the risk of burnout and improve overall employee well-being.
Potential cost savings: A four day working week can also have financial benefits for organisations. With employees working fewer days, there may be cost savings on things like utilities, office supplies, and other overhead expenses.
Better retention: A good work-life balance is important to many employees, and a four day working week can be an attractive benefit for potential hires. By offering this option, organisations may be able to improve retention and attract top talent.
There are, of course, some potential drawbacks to a four day working week. It may not be possible for all organisations, and some employees may prefer the structure and routine of a five day working week. However, for many companies, the benefits of a four day working week could outweigh the potential drawbacks, making it a good idea to consider.
Whichever side of the fence you sit, spreadsheets aren't helping your organisation become more productive or collaborative and are a barrier to a better work-life balance.
Spreadsheets are everywhere. They are by far the most commonly used data management and data analysis tool, but they don't complement efficient teams nor remote working.
Here are some of the reasons spreadsheets are holding you back:
Spreadsheets aren’t collaborative: Two people cannot work on the same spreadsheet at the same time without the risk of overriding each other's changes. Sharing the right data with the right people at the right time is at the heart of collaborative working. Spreadsheets are all or nothing, even cloud-based offerings, such as Google Docs, do not offer the flexibility of per-sheet and per-row access controls to stay compliant with data regulations and best practices.
Spreadsheets cost a lot of time: The time spent building, maintaining, manually cranking out reports, checks and repairs to the spreadsheets is all time that could be used to drive a positive impact for the organisation. Changes to a spreadsheet's structure and mass data updates take painfully large amounts of time and are plagued with opportunities for errors.
Spreadsheets are fragile and easily toppled: One small error can throw everything out and spreadsheets are not equipped with automated tests and basic checks to verify inputted data. Typos and copy/paste errors are a thing. It is worryingly easy to accidentally mistype, overwrite cells, formulas, and lose data. The more complicated the spreadsheet and the more people using it, the more likely these errors are going to happen. Should the worst happen, spreadsheets do not have the rich audit, and version control of a modern database application.
Spreadsheets show you everything, all the time: Open a spreadsheet and you see everything on that worksheet, and everyone sees the same thing regardless of their role and needs. Sorting columns isn’t the same as bringing important and attention-worthy items to the top of the pile. It is easy to miss a time-sensitive row in a spreadsheet.
No single version of the truth: When a spreadsheet is shared and individuals begin making changes for their own purposes, it is difficult to figure out who has the latest/correct version. Each department may have its own spreadsheet for its part which may contain duplicate information, versions of the same spreadsheet can exist in multiple locations used by multiple people. Which one is the "right" one? That there is no definitive, trusted single version of the truth is a critical problem with spreadsheets.
Spreadsheets have their place. They are omnipresent and work well for their intended purpose, but aren’t substitutes for modern database applications and they don’t scale well.
Spreadsheets are expensive, if not now then later. To support the growth and resilience of your organisation, your data, and reporting needs to be in a modern database management system.
The team at Targeted Agency have been transforming outdated and unreliable spreadsheets into fit-for-purpose, modern web-based database applications for over 20 years. Speak with us today for a no-obligation, informal chat about how we can help your organisation.