Workers overwhelmingly want a 4-day workweek—on one condition


Global experiments to test a four-day workweek have gotten workers, and their bosses, onboard with the idea.

In the U.S., an overwhelming majority, 87%, of workers say they’d be interested in a four-day workweek, and 82% believe widespread adoption in the U.S. would be successful, according according to a May survey of 1,047 people from Morning Consult.

But support for a condensed workweek becomes more tenuous if remote work is off the table: 75% of workers say they’d be interested in a shorter week if remote work is allowed “all or nearly all of the time,” but just 51% of workers support a shorter week if coupled with “no remote work at all.”

It’s worth noting the Morning Consult survey defined a four-day workweek as working four days a week for 10-plus hours a day.

There are surprising generational differences at play: 93% of millennials and 88% of Gen Xers lead the way in being interested in a shorter workweek. These workers may be at the point in their careers where they have better time management skills, as well as personal responsibilities they’d rather attend to on that fifth weekday.

Morning Consult’s separate State of Workers report finds that some 4 in 5 millennials say they’re always, often or sometimes too tired after work to enjoy things in their personal lives.

Gen Zers, often stereotyped as wanting to upend workplace norms, are less interested in the benefit (83%). Young professionals may feel pressure to prove themselves in a workplace, or they may fear falling behind doing the same amount of work in less time. Baby boomers, meanwhile, show the least amount of interest (72%) in a shorter week.

“Still, no demographic group reported interest and confidence levels below 70%, again pointing to the practice’s widespread popularity,” writes Ellyn Briggs, brand analyst at Morning Consult, in the report.

Meanwhile, over half of workers still want to work remotely in some capacity, whether it’s full-time or in a hybrid arrangement, according to Morning Consult data from January. Workers say they most want the benefit to improve their commute, work-life balance and to avoid discomfort working in an office.

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