Welcome to the crazy world of Townsville alternative work schedules, where businesses are constantly trying to find that sweet spot for a good work-life balance! With the pandemic and the work-from-home normalization, gone are the days of the traditional 9-to-5 workday, as companies experiment with different schedules to meet the diverse needs of their employees.
Enter the 9-80 work schedule, a compressed workweek arrangement that allows employees to work eight 9-hour days and one 8-hour day every two weeks, leaving every alternate Friday off! How cool is that? Imagine the bragging rights while you watch your friends’ faces who don’t get a 3-day weekend!
But what does a 9-80 work schedule look like? How does it work? What are the advantages and pitfalls? Don’t worry; we’ll explore the sugar, spice, and everything nice about this plan today. So, grab your caffeine of choice, and let’s dive in!
· Types of Alternate Work Schedules
· What is a 9-80 Work Schedule?
· The Sugar and Spice
· And Everything Nice—Effect on Payroll
· Chemical X—Case Studies
Plan Bs—The Types of Alternate Work Schedules
Let’s face it; the traditional 40-hour work week just isn’t cutting it for everyone. I mean, historically, this standard was introduced to reduce working hours for the labor workforce, who were working up to a hundred per week. But the law was passed in the 1900s, and the world has changed drastically since then. And especially in the post-pandemic world, it’s proven that a shake-up in the rigid structure is a necessity.
Here are a couple of alternatives to the rigid 8-hour, 5-day week:
i. 2-2-3 Work Schedule
This schedule allows employees to work only 180 days per year with alternate 3-day weekends. The caveat is a 12-hour shift for each working day. Here’s an example of a 2-2-3 work calendar for a month:
This schedule usually works great for construction and healthcare industries, where working long hours is a given. It breaks apart the week, giving employees the breather they need to keep working without experiencing burnout.
Read more about it here: What is a 2-2-3 Schedule, How Does it Work, and How to Make it Work for You
ii. 4-10 Work Schedule
The 4-10 work schedule involves employees working four 10-hour shifts per week, allowing for a three-day weekend every week. This is what a typical 4-10 work schedule would look like:
This schedule is much better than the 2-2-3 one in terms of long hours, but only slightly. Yes, yes, the 3-day weekend almost makes up for it…
…but you’ll still need more than that for companies or departments where employees are more productive working fewer hours for the day and would prefer wages assigned for the 40-hour week.
iii. 9-80 Work Schedule
The 9-80 work schedule template allows employees to finish the standard 80 hours every two weeks in only nine days instead of the usual ten. They do this by working 9-hour shifts with an 8-hour Friday shift every alternate week, giving every other Friday off. This is a 9-80 work schedule example for a 30-day month:
This is perfect for jobs where excessive long hours don’t actually equate to productive work, such as the creative areas of marketing or UI/UX design. And while both the 2-2-3 and 4-10 schedules have their advantages, they may not be the best fit for every business or employee.
This is where the 9-80 work schedule comes in. The compressed workweek provides the benefits of alternative schedules without the potential drawbacks, like long shifts or reduced work hours (=reduced wages). This offers a happy medium for many businesses looking to offer their employees a better work-life balance.
What is a 9-80 Schedule? The Approach
The idea behind the 9-80 schedule is simple: by working longer hours for nine days, employees can enjoy an additional day off every other week without sacrificing their full-time status. Employers who have implemented this schedule believe it can lead to increased productivity and employee satisfaction, as well as reduced absenteeism and turnover rates (yaaaayyy!).
The extended workday can also provide employees with uninterrupted blocks of time to complete projects and tasks, without the typical interruptions that occur during a regular 8-hour workday. Additionally, the longer workday allows for more flexibility in personal scheduling, such as scheduling appointments or running errands on the extra day off.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s discuss all the 9-80 work schedule pros and cons in detail first.
The Sugar and Spice of the 9-80 Work Schedule
The 9-80 work schedule can offer a number of advantages for both employers and employees. Here are some of its main benefits:
Improved work-life balance: Employees can enjoy an additional day off every other week, allowing for more time to pursue personal interests and spend time with family and friends.
Increased productivity: With slightly longer workdays, employees can work on uninterrupted projects and tasks without the typical distractions that occur during a regular 8-hour workday.
Cost savings: With one less day of commuting every other week, employees can save on transportation costs. Employers can also save office utility costs for a day every alternate week.
Reduced churn rates: Employees who are satisfied with their work-life balance and overall job satisfaction are less likely to miss work or leave the company.
While the advantages of the 9-80 work schedule are compelling, there are some potential pitfalls to consider:
Longer workdays: Even though there’s only one hour added to four days of the week, it’s still an extended workday and may not be suitable for all employees, especially those with health or family considerations.
Uneven workload: Some days may be busier than others, leading to an uneven workload for employees.
Lack of consistency: If the day-offs are rotated to make sure work gets done on all days of the week, employees with different schedules may find it difficult to collaborate or communicate effectively, leading to potential disruptions in workflow.
Legal issues: Employers must ensure that they are complying with labor laws and regulations, such as overtime pay and rest breaks.
Overall, the advantages of the 9-80 work schedule can outweigh the potential disadvantages, but it’s important for employers to carefully consider their unique needs and culture before implementing this schedule. The beauty of this schedule is that it can be implemented for a single department or even a subset of employees.
And Everything Nice—How is Payroll Affected in a 9-80 Work Week?
Now, let’s talk about everyone’s favorite topic: money! How does the 9-80 work schedule affect the employee payroll?
First, let’s break down how this system works in terms of hours. Employees work nine-hour days for nine days and eight hours for one day, resulting in 80 hours over two weeks. Each week is calculated as four 9-hour days and 4 hours of the fifth day.
The last 4 hours of that day are counted towards a new week. With this schedule, the employees still work the same number of hours as they would in a regular 40-hour work week, but in a compressed timeframe.
From a payroll perspective, the employees are still entitled to their regular pay rate for all hours worked. However, you do need to pay some extra attention when it comes to calculating the 9-80 schedule overtime. In most cases, overtime is calculated after an employee has worked 40-44 hours in a workweek.
However, if an employee works more than this in a week, they are entitled to overtime pay for the additional hours worked. Fortunately, most time trackers can handle the 9-80 schedule without any issues. They calculate resource costs in billable hours, so it doesn’t really matter which schedule you follow.
Overall, the 9-80 work schedule shouldn’t cause any major payroll headaches as long as employers are diligent about tracking hours and calculating overtime accurately. However, understandably, manual tracking can be a pain, so it’s better to pick a tool that tracks work hours automatically.
Read: How Does An Automated Time Tracking Tool Work?
Chemical X—Learning from Others
While Professor Utonium may have accidentally dropped in the Chemical X, we suggest you use it liberally in your 9-80 viability research for your company. In this case, it’s learning from other companies. Let’s take a couple of examples:
Raytheon—a global technology and innovation company—is an example of a business that successfully implemented the 9/80 work schedule. The employee reviews on glassdoor show a clear appreciation of the system with alternate Fridays off, and consider it one of the biggest pros of working at the company.
The global petroleum refineries company, Chevron, is another example of a successful implementation of the 9-80 work schedule. Like Raytheon, they also have fixed off days, except it is split between four “Crews”—two of these employee segments get Fridays off while the other two get Mondays off.
Roth Staffing Companies
The only staffing company to get its name on the first position of Inc. 500, Roth offers a 9-80 work schedule to its employees, 79% of whom take full advantage of it. And by the looks of it, they are very happy with the work-life balance they get with this system!
Now, all of this doesn’t mean you should hop on to make 9-80 your only wonder child. All the companies we listed above offer other flexible work options. It’s important to understand what your employees are looking for and which system would fit their needs to help them be their most productive selves at the workplace.
In conclusion, the 9-80 work schedule can be a great option for companies looking to provide their employees with a better work-life balance while maintaining productivity. With longer workdays and every other Friday (or another weekday) off, employees can feel more energized and engaged, leading to higher levels of job satisfaction and retention.
If you decide 9-80 is right for you, you should have the right tools in place so as to implement this system effectively. There’s honestly no point in committing to it half-heartedly. And this is where timegram comes in.
This time-and-productivity-tracking tool can help you keep on top of your team’s hours, overtime, and payroll. All while making sure your employees don’t feel like they’re under the microscope.
Interested? Check out all the features right here.
How does the 9-80 work schedule work with the holidays?
To ensure the hours are calculated fairly, vacation days for each 8-hour day are counted as single days, while each 9-hour day is counted as one day + one hour.
Does a 9-80 work schedule have every other Friday off?
Not necessarily. Many companies with a 9-80 schedule do offer alternate Fridays off, but some have rotational offs or different designated days.
Is 4-10 better or 9-80?
This depends on the nature of work as well as the employee preferences. For some, a 3-day weekend is worth working 10-hour shifts for four days straight, while others are more comfortable with less than ten working hours.