March 1, 2021 was the primary day my legislation agency started the 4 day work week venture. In my previous blog, I defined the explanation why we selected this venture and the quite a few benefits it offers for all concerned.

However earlier than implementing the venture, we needed to assume lengthy and exhausting about our insurance policies to verify this works. This took loads of group and particular person effort and analysis, however the measures and insurance policies turned very effectively thought out. I want to share them for anybody pondering of doing a 4 day week venture for their very own legislation companies or different corporations.

With out additional ado, right here we go:

First and Foremost, a Short-term 3 Month Pilot Venture

I’d by no means soar into one thing so drastic and dangerous completely. In spite of everything we’re one of many first legislation companies for our dimension in Canada to be implementing this so I need this to be a hit. A very powerful factor I made certain was managing expectations of attorneys and workers:

  • There’s a actual likelihood we might revert to five working days every week after 3 months;
  • We’re taking pictures for taking on 80% of Wednesdays off, not all of them. In different phrases, if we have now to work on Wednesdays as a result of one thing pressing comes up, then so be it.

The secret is to have the freedom to take the break day, not that it’s necessary to take action. 

Choosing Which Day of the Week to Take off

This was very troublesome to determine and we struggled with it. We had been torn between Wednesdays and Fridays:

  • Naturally most individuals want to have Fridays off as a result of it means lengthy weekends each weekend. However the issue I sensed was that an excessive amount of work and unanswered emails would pile as much as the purpose that the workers and attorneys can be too wired come Monday. That may defeat the aim which is permitting staff a break day to unplug and loosen up.
  • Wednesdays present a pleasant mid-week break, and other people wouldn’t be as wired as a result of they’d be again to work on Thursdays.

We determined to check out Wednesdays for one month after which possibly attempt Fridays the following month to see what works higher.

Essential: we’re protecting our telephones and workplaces open 5 days every week as defined under.

Do We Do Make Up Days if We’ve to Work on a Day Off?

I felt that if somebody has to return to work on a Wednesday due to an pressing matter, then they shouldn’t be asking for make up time without work. In spite of everything, this can be a favour or a privilege, not an obligation. Making up for having to work on a Wednesday would create an excessive amount of chaos and disorganization, and we determined in opposition to it.

What About Pressing Issues on Wednesdays?

We had huge debates on whether or not we should always arrange auto replies telling everybody we aren’t round or not. On the finish I made a decision in opposition to it. As a substitute I requested the assistants to test the lawyer’s emails at 1 p.m. on Wednesdays for a couple of minutes and produce up any pressing points to the lawyer’s consideration. This manner shoppers wouldn’t freak out pondering we aren’t round in any respect on Wednesdays. Since checking the lawyer’s emails wouldn’t take various minutes, the assistants don’t thoughts doing this.

What are the Work Hours for a 4 Day Work Week?

I requested our staff so as to add 1 hour to their shifts – so from 8 a.m. to five p.m., 8:30 a.m. to five:30 p.m. or 9 to six p.m. Because of this they’d add 4 hours every week to their 4 days and the agency would take up the remaining 4 hours. This manner, our backside line wouldn’t be hit as exhausting and usually all staff had been extraordinarily receptive and happy with this association.

Having mentioned the above, I listened to a Podcast by Quinn Ross from the Ross Firm, an Ontario agency near our dimension which has applied the 4 day week work. He acknowledged that they began with 10 hours, 4 days and that didn’t work. They’re now doing the traditional 8 hours a day, 4 days every week. He stories that profitability and development haven’t been negatively impacted in any respect – in actual fact, they’re on an upward swing.

So I’ll see how issues go for our agency.

The Cool Factor About Our New Workplace Hours

Given that everybody can be working 9 hours, 4 days every week, we have now truly been in a position to broaden our workplace hours from 8 a.m. to six p.m. as an alternative of the traditional 9 to five. It’s because some workers will work from 8 to five and a few from 10 to six, so we will truly broaden our service hours as an alternative of decreasing them. As defined under, on the date our receptionist is off, one other workers members works and as an alternative takes a unique break day.

This implies all of us apart from one particular person take Wednesdays off.

What About Serving Our Purchasers on the Day Off?

It is rather necessary to level out one thing vital right here: we aren’t closing down our agency on Wednesdays. On Wednesdays, our receptionist works and solutions the telephones (and as an alternative takes one other break day). Pressing issues can be dropped at the eye of the lawyer and assistant, and enterprise so far as shoppers go will run as standard. All we’re doing is placing in our retainer agreements that we are going to reply to pressing issues solely on Wednesdays, not that we’re closed on Wednesdays.

Is Everybody at YLaw Blissful A few 4 Day Work Week?

Surprisingly, though most of us are thrilled, some aren’t. A few of our attorneys don’t know the way to implement this given the character of household legislation wherein our calendars usually are not at all times beneath our management. We might should cope with pressing issues, a number of issues or work 7 days every week to meet up with trial preparation. So understandably among the attorneys are anxious about truly with the ability to take Wednesdays off.

My advise has been: you’ve got the choice of taking of a day in week, you wouldn’t have to. This I discover relieves the stress of getting to vary life round to implement 4 work days every week. This solely says we’re versatile must you determine to take action.

As for employees, they’re all thrilled. Attorneys can have versatile schedules and take time without work. Employees should be at work on inflexible shifts. With the ability to attend their appointments, be with their household and unplug permits them freedom and autonomy and in some ways helps them with psychological and bodily wellness.

I’ll you’ll want to report again after one month to see the place we’re, and whether or not we have to change something. 

Till then my mates, keep bodily and mentally effectively.

Written by Leena Yousefi

To learn concerning the cause why we applied our 4 day weeks, click here.