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As reported in HR Leader, a hot topic in 2023 was a 4-day work week which many companies chose to trial. ESS Shipping introduced the 4-day week to eligible staff and followed the 100-80-100 model, effectively implementing a strategy in which workers receive 100 per cent of pay, for 80 per cent time at work while maintaining 100 per cent productivity. ESS Shipping noted the strategy was a great success as absenteeism is down, productivity has remained constant with operational metrics trending higher than the year before. ESS Shipping is still meeting business targets and delivering the same high level of service and communication.

Advantages of a 4-day work week include increased employee wellbeing, and the attraction and retention of workers. With a shorter work week, employees manage their time more effectively and examine more efficient ways to operate.

The company also realised that a one-size-fits-all approach to the days off worked would not be possible in 24/7 operations. In this instance management empowered each department to determine how best to allocate time to workers that produced the best results.

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