Should all offices offer "summer Fridays"? | The Tylt
Should all offices offer "summer Fridays"?
According to Just Works, an HR technology company, summer Fridays can work for companies of all sizes. As Just Works' Sasha Butkovich puts it:
Summer Fridays are a relatively small gesture that can make a tremendous impact on employee happiness.
Summer Fridays are simply days during the summer where an employer lets employees off early. Employees don't have to take any extra paid time off and can still enjoy the warm, long days of summer with family and friends.
It's always in an employer's best interest to consider the stress their employees are under, and summer Fridays can be a perfect solution to relieve feelings of being overworked.
In our often overworked culture, many people believe that the more hours employees work, the more productive they are. In fact, it can be the opposite. Productivity at the office drops sharply when employees work more than 50 hours each week...Having a head start on their weekend makes people happy. And when employees are happy, everyone wins.
But not everyone is on the same page about summer Fridays. According to some HR professionals, summer Fridays are nothing more than another "perk" meant to make employees grateful, when in reality, they aren't really getting any favors. MarketWatch's Meera Jagannathan looks to Laurie Ruettimann for insight:
“You’re still working the same amount of hours; you’re just shifting your time to get off on a Friday — and your organization is making you feel like they’re doing you a favor,” Ruettimann told MarketWatch. “This is just another way for companies to pretend like they’re offering you a benefit, but it’s really not a benefit if it’s just the same amount of work distributed differently.”
Ruettimann's message is clear: "Summer Fridays are for suckers."
For many employees, a few extra hours off on a Friday can go a long way towards making them more productive the rest of the week. Summer Fridays are a win-win for both employers and employees; summer is a slow season for many businesses anyway, and there isn't an employee out there who wouldn't appreciate leaving early on a Friday.
While some employees might be reading poolside on their summer Fridays, others take advantage of the system. According to CBS's Amy Levin-Epstein, it's not uncommon for summer Fridays to turn Fridays into full-scale drain on productivity.
If you have a half day on Friday, the morning can be pretty futile in terms of getting work done. "Summer Fridays can be extremely distracting for employees counting down until vacations, barbecues and weekends laying by the pool," said career expert Heather R. Huhman, founder of Come Recommended.
Some employees leave even earlier than the summer Friday schedule dictates, and others don't use their morning productively.