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CEO Carlene Jackson from Cloud9 Insight came up with the initiative as an alternative to the four-day week pilot.
A Brighton-based company has declared its alternative to the four-day week a success after data showed both happy staff and clients.
Between July and September 2022, Cloud9 Insight trialed an innovative alternative to the much-discussed four-day working week: a ‘nine-day fortnight’.
For just an extra half an hour worked every Monday to Thursday, employees were rewarded with every other Friday off – paid – and a dedicated day per fortnight to focus on Strategy, Innovation, Learning, Charity and Community. The company called these days SILCC days.
Three months after it began the trial, Cloud9 Insight surveyed both employees and clients, finding both groups strongly approved of the scheme.
“We ran surveys both in April 2022, before the trial began and again in September, to determine how both clients and staff responded,” said CEO Carlene Jackson.
“The results were powerful, with 92% of employees agreeing they felt they had a good work-life balance, up from 88% in April. Clients also responded positively, with survey data and individual feedback indicating no change in our standards following the shift to a nine-day fortnight. Meanwhile, our financial data shows the company continued to grow at the same rate both before and during the trial, while client satisfaction was maintained at 94% or above each month.”
The nine-day fortnight idea was created by Jackson who felt the joy of the four-day week could dissipate over time.
“People get used to perks very quickly, so they lose their power,” said Jackson. “However, having a five-day week followed by a four-day one gives them something to compare it to. My team wanted to spend more time with their families and responded well to the idea of compressing their hours into a shorter week. But we were concerned this might lead to much longer days. So we came up with what you might call a third way – the nine-day fortnight.”
Under this initiative, staff hours are increased by thirty minutes to eight hours per day, while everyone has a day off every other Friday. There is no change to pay, although the overall hours are reduced by three per fortnight.
“It’s proven effective and popular so far though we’ll keep reviewing,” admitted Jackson. “As an employer I am pleased to be helping my team gain a better work-life balance.”
You can read and download the full report on Cloud9’s trial and the results here.