Atom Bank has become the largest company in Britain to introduce a four-day working week for all of its 430 employees.
The move allows all Atom employees to choose to move to a 34 hour working week over four days, paid at the same contracted salary rate as their former five day, 37.5 hour week.
Mondays or Fridays are expected to be the default days off for the majority of employees, except for those working in operational and services roles whose day out of the office may vary to ensure an uninterrupted level of customer service.
Atom Bank chief Mark Mullen says that coming out of the pandemic, the 20th century concept of a five day week is, in many cases, no longer fit for purpose for 21st century businesses
“Since March 2020, Atom, along with almost all workplaces around the world, has had to adapt rapidly to new ways of working. Our experience has exploded many of the myths of the modern workplace," says Mullen. "It has happened at a time when we all need to become more aware of the impact of work on both our mental and physical wellbeing. We now know that many jobs can be done as efficiently and productively from peoples’ own homes as from the office. But why stop there? More can be done - more needs to change."
Recent research found trials of a four-day week among public sector workers in Iceland were an "overwhelming success" and helped reduce stress and burnout.
And Microsoft Japan said sales had been boosted by nearly 40% during an experiment in which staff worked a four-day week on full pay back in 2019.
“A four-day week will provide our employees with more opportunities to pursue their passions, spend time with their families, and build a healthier work/life balance," says Mullen. "We firmly believe that this will prove beneficial for our employees’ wellbeing and happiness and that it will have an equally positive impact on business productivity and customer experience."