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The four-day work week - a trial for Connected Accountants

At Connected Accountants ‘better business’ means a sustainable business that thrives now and well into the future, while also looking out for others – profit, people, & planet.  This applies to the business advice we provide to customers as well as to our own operations and is a primary reason for trialing a four-day work week.

The four-day working week – a trial for Connected Accountants

We are set to trial a four-day working week, kicking off on February 10. As keen advocates of finding new ways to work smarter and more efficiently, our research and internal debate led us towards undertaking a six-month trial period.

During this period, we’ll actively be inviting client feedback to ensure our levels of service remain as expected. We’ve also come up with a few other (financial & non-financial) performance measures so that we can evolve and improve along the way.

We’ve decided that Friday will be the day when our office is closed for regular accounting and advisory services and believe that this approach should improve how we deliver positive outcomes to our clients.

Why are we trialing this?

We’ve considered a number of factors and are led by the fact that we want to continue to improve our offering. Here are a few we’ve considered:

  • Innovative ideas excite us and we wanted to try something different for our industry
  • Recent research points to a rise in productivity with a four-day week and we think this is a ‘win-win’ for us and our clients
  • The people factor – we believe that our team will thrive and be happier and more engaged at work
  • We have in place measures of success – if targets & KPIs are not met, the benefit isn’t realised by our team
  • We are looking to become an industry leader in areas of social wellbeing, environmental care and agile working environments. We have to live it!

Since the 2018 trial by Perpetual Guardian we’ve seen the idea gain worldwide attention and engagement, mainly via the research and efforts of the team at 4 Day Week Global Foundation. For example, as stated by Andrew Barnes in a recent interview “at one point, the perpetual Guardian four-day week was the most-read story in the New York Times after the Trump/Putin summit”.

In a world where we all seek balance and there are increasing demands on our time, a more focused work week makes sense. We are encouraged by the results observed by Perpertual Guardian, Microsoft Japan, and others and are inspired to set off our own journey with the aim to improve and adapt for the long term.

We believe this fresh approach will help our talented team find better ways to deliver our services. But this doesn’t affect the nature of the services that we provide. As always, we remain committed to providing high-level advisory and accounting outcomes.

How does it work?

Our hours will remain the same from Monday to Thursday and on Friday we will be closed for regular business. We have asked our team to deliver 100% of their agreed work in 80% of the time, in return for 100% of their remuneration. That’s the simple methodology that we’ve followed here.

During February we will be sharing more around the ‘why’ of the future of working in our industry and how this will play out.

In short

  • The Connected four-day working week trial begins on February 10 and will be assessed over six months
  • Our hours remain 8.30 to 5.00pm Monday to Thursday
  • On Friday our offices will be closed for regular business
  • We would appreciate your feedback on this approach and will be sending a survey to clients, our team, and some other stakeholders in the next couple of days
  • In an ‘accounting emergency’ on a Friday you’ll still be able to contact any of us by phone for urgent service.

Please get in touch and let us know your thoughts around this initiative. We look forward to sharing some of the research feedback and progress as we move through the trial.

Let’s make 2020 a year for opportunity and growth!

Connected Accountants. 



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Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 9:00pm
FAQ – So, Friday becomes a holiday for you? Not exactly. We will still be available by phone and email, and if there is anything that urgently needs to be completed on a Friday we will do it. Our day off is earned, it is not taken for granted nor taken when it isn’t practical to do so. It’s also a good opportunity for us to use Friday for training and learning purposes, and studying towards our Chartered Accountant qualifications for those of us that are still working towards that.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:59pm
FAQ – Is this a permanent change? For now it is a six month trial. This gives us long enough to get past the “honeymoon period” and evaluate how we’re doing, from our perspective and yours.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:49pm
FAQ – Are you cramming more work into four days? Will this affect the quality of the work? The idea is to get the same amount of work done in four days that we’d normally do in five by increasing our efficiency. This does not mean the quality of the work will suffer – if it does, we consider the trial a failure!
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:48pm
FAQ – I need you on a Friday! Nice try! We’re increasing our efficiency but the amount and quality of the work that we’re doing for you won’t change, and so our fees will be the same.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:48pm
FAQ – The merger in 2019 was positioned as “things won’t change”, what does this mean? When we say things won’t change, we’re referring to the quality of the service you receive from us and the way you work with us, not that nothing will ever change. Resistance to change puts you at risk of falling behind the rest of the world, so we’re always looking for ways to innovate and improve the way we work to make things better for our clients and our employees.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:48pm
FAQ – Will my fee be reduced? Nice try! We’re increasing our efficiency but the amount and quality of the work that we’re doing for you won’t change, and so our fees will be the same.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:48pm
FAQ – So, if you’re doing the same amount of work, how are you going to cut out a whole day? By cutting down on time spent doing things that aren’t actually necessary or productive. This means streamlining a lot of our processes behind the scenes so that we have more time to spend working directly with you. Of course, it also means spending less time checking our Facebooks and doing the Stuff quiz.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:47pm
FAQ – Friday is the best day for me to meet with you, I’d prefer not to reschedule That’s fine! We will still make ourselves available for Friday meetings with you. Delivering a quality service that fits your needs is always our priority.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:46pm
FAQ – I’m a bit jealous! We were too when we heard about companies doing this – why not think about implementing it yourself? Please get in touch and we can help you think about how it might work for you. We’ll also be sharing our experience and what we learn once we get a bit further down the track.
Devoe Rangi wrote:
Official
19 Feb 8:46pm
FAQ – Can I give you feedback? Please do! We’ll be actively collecting feedback, but please feel free to email or call any time if you have any thoughts, positive or negative.

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