2 in 3 working Brits would switch jobs for Four-Day Week, study finds

News, Work

Over 20 million Brits would ditch their current job if they were offered a similar role elsewhere with a four-day working week, according to a new study on workplace benefits.  

The research, conducted by the experts at iCompario, surveyed 2,000 British workers on their current benefits, and quizzed them on the employee benefits that might tempt them to move on.

As well as a four-day working week (68%), being able to work flexible hours (64%) and the opportunity to earn overtime pay (63%) showed up as the benefits most likely to tempt Brits away from their current employer.

Despite the four-day working week being seen as the holy grail, it was revealed that only one in ten working Brits (10%) currently receive this benefit.

The cost-of-living crisis appears to be affecting how many of us view work benefits, with one in eight of those surveyed (13%) saying that they would also prefer to get food or energy bill vouchers over traditional workplace benefits like a company pension scheme or private health insurance.

Shockingly, one in nine UK workers (11%) don’t currently receive any work benefits at all.

All in all, there are ten workplace benefits desirable enough for the majority of the UK workforce to consider moving jobs for, if they were offered a similar these alongside a similar role:

Benefits most likely to tempt workers away from their employer

  1. A four-day working week (68%) 
  2. Flexible hours (64%) 
  3. Overtime pay (63%) 
  4. Remote working (56%) 
  5. A company pension scheme (56%) 
  6. A private healthcare plan (54%) 
  7. Performance-based bonuses (54%) 
  8. Early finish on a Friday (54%) 
  9. Company shares (50%) 
  10. Employee discounts (50%) 

Over half of emergency service workers such as paramedics and firefighters (56%) admitted they are dissatisfied with the level of benefits they receive in their role, making them the most unhappy with their perks at work.

Creative workers are also among those who are most likely to be unhappy with their benefits, with those working in marketing and advertising (50%) and design/creative roles (42%) demonstrating ‘work perk’ dissatisfaction in large numbers.

A third of those who said that they are dissatisfied with their benefits (33%) said that they would rather receive the cash value of their benefits than the perks themselves.

Workers in Belfast are the most likely to be dissatisfied with their work benefits, with over a third (36%) reporting their unhappiness. Those working in Liverpool (31%) and Newcastle (31%) are similarly unimpressed by the benefits package they receive.

Data from job board provider Adzuna reveals that across all current advertised job roles in the UK, a cycle-to-work scheme is the most frequently listed benefit – over 50,000 job adverts included this benefit in September 2022.

Company pension schemes (44,085) showed up as the next most likely benefit to be included in a UK job advert, with remote working (41,120), employee discount (40,146), and a company car/car allowance (33,239) rounding up the top five.

Accounting and finance employers appear to be most likely to offer a role with home working – Adzuna job adverts in this sector listed remote working as a benefit more frequently than any other.

Says Kerry Fawcett, Digital Director at iCompario:

 “The study findings show how important a role benefits can play in retaining a happy and loyal workforce. Many workplace benefits make a tangible difference to people’s lives, and workers are much more likely to stay put in their current role if they feel that their employer is rewarding them sufficiently for their efforts.

“Our study gives some indication of the types of benefits that are most sought-after on a general basis, but employers are likely to want to conduct their own research to ensure that they are offering benefits that employees in their specific sector are looking for – getting this right can play a big part in retaining talent.”

Adds Gareth Hoyle, Managing Director at Marketing Signals, whose company introduced a four-day working week for their employees earlier this year: 

“The catalyst was when one of our developers asked for a permanent 4-day week to help with childcare. A lot of what we do is measurable – code commits, features, implemented, links built etc – this makes it much easier to analyse the change that occurs and make qualified decisions on whether something has been a success or not. 

“The benefits of the 4-day week have been a higher retention rate of existing employees and a great carrot for new hires as we implement this as front and centre in our attraction messaging. Everyone just seems much happier, and the output hasn’t slowed so all good on those fronts!”

“Would I recommend a 4-day work week to other business owners? As long as you trust your processes and systems and are confident you are tracking the right things, then go for it. It won’t work for everyone, but for us, we love it and certainly don’t plan on going back.”

You can find further information here: https://www.icompario.com/en-gb/guides/workplace-benefits/

Chris Price
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