HR Leads Business

Jun 13, 2017 | Barry Lawrence, MBA, HRCI Staff Writer

More Employers Embrace Summer Fridays

Summer hours during Fridays are here for many employees, a trend that is growing based on a new Gartner survey. Data from the CEB Global Talent Monitor (CEB is now Gartner), 42 percent of organizations will offer their employees "Summer Fridays" in 2017, up 20 percent from similar benefits in 2015.

Employees may use Summer Fridays to leave work early or take the day off entirely. There are many options.

A Creative, Low-Cost Benefit

"As the number of employees feeling more confident about their personal job prospects increases, companies must find creative ways to reward and retain their top talent," said Gartner HR practice leader Brian Kropp Brian Kropp in a press release. "Giving employees the gift of time via Summer Fridays is one low-cost way to improve employee engagement, which in turn can increase employee productivity and drive business results."

JUSTWORKS provides some flexible Summer Friday options:

  • Trade extra hours during the week for hours off on Friday. "Many companies take this approach and apply it throughout the year," JUSTWORKS notes.
  • Half of Friday off. "Employees come in the morning to ensure that everything is done, then leave right around lunch. They still get to enjoy some of the day and you get to ensure that everything is done."
  • Every other Friday off. "Stagger days so that half of the company is off on one Friday and the other half is off the other Friday."
  • Every Friday off. "This is the most generous of the options, but 14% of companies make this a year-round policy, including places like like Reusser Design, Basecamp, and KMPG."
  • Offer flexible hours off. "Consider giving your employees the flexibility to choose when they apply their summer hours each week. Perhaps some team members would prefer Monday mornings off, or Wednesday afternoons. Being flexible could help you use your company's summer hours policy to its maximum impact."

Allowing worker flexibility may have other benefits, says HRDive. "Employers might save on energy expenses by having fewer workers on-site using lighting, air conditioning and office equipment like computers and printers during the workweek."

The key is to not get obsessed with the belief that more hours equates to greater productivity, concludes JUSTWORKS. "In fact, it's the opposite. Productivity at the office drops sharply when employees work more than 50 hours each week. Overworked employees also sleep less, drink more and cost companies more for health care."

As with all HR best practices, choose your initiatives carefully. What works for one organization or department, may not work for another.

Does your company have a Summer Friday program? Why or why not?