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Author Topic: Tech advances should make 4-day workweek a reality for the 21st century  (Read 106 times)
Hydrogen
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September 12, 2018, 07:59:02 AM
 #1

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Advances in technology and productivity should make four-day work weeks a reality soon enough.

That's according to Frances O'Grady, the general secretary of the Trades Union Congress, an organization in the United Kingdom representing labor unions.

"I believe that in this century, we can win a four-day working week, with decent pay for everyone," O'Grady said during a speech at the TUC's annual gathering in Manchester, England on Monday.

In earlier centuries, workers had to fight for things like the eight-hour workdays, O'Grady points out, which was also the case in the U.S. Now, in the 21st century, "a time of rapid industrial disruption" according to O'Grady, it's time to set our sights on the shorter work week "to take back control of working time," she said.

O'Grady also said, "[A]s new tech grows, everyone should get richer."

O'Grady's comments add to recent buzz about the feasibility of a shorter workweek.

Serial entrepreneur Richard Branson said advances in technology mean that workplaces can reconsider the traditional five-day work week.

"Ideas such as driverless cars and drones are becoming a reality, and machines will be used for more and more jobs in the future. Even pilot-less planes will be become the reality in the not too distant future," Branson wrote in a blog post in January.

"On the face of it, this sounds like bad news for people. However, if governments and businesses are clever, the advance of technology could actually be really positive for people all over the world. It could help accelerate the marketplace to much smarter working practices," Branson said.

In particular, technology enables people to work when and where they want, says Branson, a practice Virgin managers are encouraged to embrace, according to his blog post. Technology can also increase the efficiency of work, said Branson and that means people could work fewer hours.

"Many people out there would love three day or even four day weekends. There are many people out there who would want to job share, and would love longer holidays. Everyone would welcome more time to spend with their loved ones, more time to get fit and healthy, more time to explore the world," Branson says. "By working more efficiently, there is no reason why people can't work less hours and be equally – if not more – effective."

Similarly, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has said advances in artificial intelligence will lead to longer vacations. "More free time is not a terrible thing," Gates told FOX Business Network at the World Economic Forum in January.

Perpetual Guardian, a 240-employee New Zealand firm that manages trusts, wills and estates, recently garnered attention for conducting a two-month trial where employees worked four days a week at their regular five-days-a-weekk pay. It was considered a success: Staff stress levels lowered 7 percent, and 78 percent said they could manage work-life balance, from only 54 percent pre-trial.

Plus, the change created good will. "Many employees see the reduced working hours as 'a gift' and 'a privilege not a right,' and feel a deep sense of goodwill and reciprocity towards the organization, which manifests in an openness to 'go the extra mile' and think about 'what I can do to give back,'" says the resulting qualitative analysis from Dr. Helene Delaney from the University of Auckland Business School. "Many employees reported a willingness to be available for work purposes on their day off."

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/10/trades-union-congress-4-day-workweeks-should-be-reality-this-century.html

....

If advances in technology and productivity can result in a 4 day work week.

Then perhaps the sooner we witness a mass adoption of bitcoin and crypto currencies, the sooner we may reap the benefits of technological progress and productivity gains supplied by utilizing more reliable crypto currencies over troubled fiat money. Like birds migrating south for the winter, a better migration pattern to crypto currencies could represent a greener pasture for the dawn of future financial and economic progress, which could be defined in terms of algorithmic or artificial intelligence based offerings such as the algorithm bitcoin utilizes to determine supply.

That said does anyone have an impression calls for a 4 day work week may be a tad bit over optimistic in origins? What can be said of inflation and its outpacing of wage growth? How likely is such a thing likely to become widespread or popularized in a world where robots and automation is becoming more widely supported everyday?

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bitChipper
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September 12, 2018, 04:41:51 PM
 #2

What can be said of inflation and its outpacing of wage growth? How likely is such a thing likely to become widespread or popularized in a world where robots and automation is becoming more widely supported everyday?

Well there is no doubt in my mind that in the next 3-4 decades we will see a drastic loss in jobs due to AI and robotics, the idea of a universal basic income has become even that much more common amongst policy makers because of this.
But I wonder how a universal basic income would even fit into crypto or even at all ya know? I guess with inflation of fiat money a basic income would make sense.

That said does anyone have an impression calls for a 4 day work week may be a tad bit over optimistic in origins?

I know that there will still be an enormous amount of jobs in the tertiary sector (services) and the quanternary sector(information services). For example who wants to be waited on by a robot at a restaurant? I know I wouldn't, then again
a robot would probably be able to keep my drink full vs a human. But I know for sure a robot couldn't do the job I do on a daily basis (GIS), not saying im smart or amazing or anything, just that it would take a seriously advanced robot to
do certain desk jobs. With that said I think a 4 day work week will apply mostly to sectors slowly being replaced by robotics.

Like birds migrating south for the winter, a better migration pattern to crypto currencies could represent a greener pasture for the dawn of future financial and economic progress

To this I agree that the world will benefit from P2P systems and tech, when the world is more open and available for everyone to reap the benefits of borderless finance. It goes to the point of all the 3rd world countries skipping decades of fiat
sytems and getting on par modern tech.

Just my 2 cents, thanks.

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bitmover
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September 13, 2018, 01:35:27 AM
 #3

I doubt we will have 4 days working per week.

Probably more people will be fired and those left will work for 5 days.

Why should i have 5 employees working 4 days a week, if I can have 4 employees working 5 days?

What can be said of inflation and its outpacing of wage growth? How likely is such a thing likely to become widespread or popularized in a world where robots and automation is becoming more widely supported everyday?

Well there is no doubt in my mind that in the next 3-4 decades we will see a drastic loss in jobs due to AI and robotics, the idea of a universal basic income has become even that much more common amongst policy makers because of this.
But I wonder how a universal basic income would even fit into crypto or even at all ya know? I guess with inflation of fiat money a basic income would make sense.

I believe that an universal income would be disastrous for the humanity.

Humans have to work. They can't just sit and watch TV and receive a passive income. This not healthy in long term.
Few people are able to produce something useful in their free time. And these people are able to find free time even working 44 hours a week.

Humans need to think, work, learn news things.

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September 13, 2018, 05:28:18 AM
 #4

The 4-hour work week idea has nothing to do with further cryptocurrency and blockchain adoption.
The idea that people will work less because of the technology innovations and automation is a myth,because the greedy capitalists always want biggers profits.In order to get those bigger profits,they will force their employees to work more.

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September 13, 2018, 05:42:03 AM
 #5

I don't think people even have jobs in the upcoming decades since the technology has been developing a lot and most of the industries already using the static or programmed robots in future if the artifical intelligence gets developed the manpower will be replaced with the robots so we are not going to have job in a single day for a week.

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September 13, 2018, 11:31:40 AM
 #6

I think 4 day workweek or 7 day workweek, they all depend on your job.

I have been working in 3 different jobs and never step outside of my house. I have been working for proper big huge companies and I have done small stuff for family and friends and none of them were somewhere outside so I did all of them in front of my PC.

Nevertheless, I used to work in hotels and I had to be in the hotel to work in the hotel obviously, also it was 3 shifts so we covered 7/24 always being there and we never had Christmas or new years or whatever as a free day because hotel was obviously open on those days as well so there need to be workers there. Hence we always need to see which work we talk about when we say 4 day workweek.

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September 13, 2018, 09:27:24 PM
 #7

With this I think people in the next decades who work in blue collar factory job should learn technical troubleshooting and a bit of programming if the mass ai and robotics adoption happens as the only job lest will be maintaining these robotics however those job openings will only be limited.
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September 13, 2018, 11:08:57 PM
 #8

Here in the country,  4-day workweek bill has already been approved by the Congress, but the employers are warning the gov't that it's not good to compress all the workloads in just 4 days, no matter how advanced the technology they're using currently. It gives workers more time to rest, however if they are going to add the hours of a day, it will still result for a worker feeling tired and empty at the end of every shift. Also, if anything they need to define what jobs are to be benefiting from such a proposition, because obviously some jobs need 24/7 coverage, prime example is for security of buildings/properties.

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September 13, 2018, 11:22:29 PM
 #9

4 day work week sounds so fucking good, but realistically it won't happen. Companies like to rip the shit out of people,and term it as more productivity. 4 day workweek would only lower wages down. That article is garbage, the statements aren't well thought of. The world is a horrible place to live in right now, and people only have to discuss useless things.


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September 13, 2018, 11:30:19 PM
 #10

Here in the country,  4-day workweek bill has already been approved by the Congress, but the employers are warning the gov't that it's not good to compress all the workloads in just 4 days, no matter how advanced the technology they're using currently. It gives workers more time to rest, however if they are going to add the hours of a day, it will still result for a worker feeling tired and empty at the end of every shift. Also, if anything they need to define what jobs are to be benefiting from such a proposition, because obviously some jobs need 24/7 coverage, prime example is for security of buildings/properties.

Correct. That is their resolve for this issue.
You want 4 days of work? Then work 12 hours a day.
That did not even change a thing. Actually it is worse. It will feel like slavery and those who are working sitting for hours will get a very bad backache.
I like the idea of having more days of rest. But the hours? That hurts a lot for a day. It is like work and home only with nothing else to do. Preparation time will also be cut.
How about the ladies who takes 1-2 hours for make up. Grin

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September 13, 2018, 11:56:01 PM
 #11

Richard Branson is already arguing for a 3-day work week - https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/richard-branson-believes-the-key-to-success-is-a-3-day-workweek/ar-BBNe4WM
"Branson is pushing business leaders to embrace the idea of flexible work arrangements, claiming that with today's cutting-edge technology, there is no reason people can't work less hours and be equally — if not more — effective."
To be honest, although technology is making out tasks easier, employers still want to maximize the time that they are paying for. So instead of our lives being easier, we just get more tasks because of this maximization of labor.
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September 14, 2018, 12:27:12 AM
 #12

Companies like to rip the shit out of people,and term it as more productivity.
True, but maybe that should give people more motivation to no longer work for an employer, but to start up something yourself. What else is there to do for people? The situation will only become worse like this.

Most people hate their jobs, complain, become stressed out and exhausted, and who's there to be blamed for? Is it the employer or people's lack of will to fight for that change? I'll go with the latter for sure.

Nothing comes easy in life and these 4-day work weeks won't change anything if the underlying problem is still there. Once we have a 4-day work week everyone will crave for 3-day work weeks. It's a never ending problem.

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September 14, 2018, 12:39:31 AM
 #13

This is interesting.  In a sentence, the point of an economy is to eliminate work.  Think of the fact that just about any invention you can think of was invented in order to simplify a job, reduce it, or eliminate labor and freeing up human labor for other pursuits.
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September 14, 2018, 12:56:35 AM
 #14

I don't think people even have jobs in the upcoming decades since the technology has been developing a lot and most of the industries already using the static or programmed robots in future if the artifical intelligence gets developed the manpower will be replaced with the robots so we are not going to have job in a single day for a week.
yes, precisely with the development of technology, people are losing their jobs. just consider factories that use robots and replace humans. Farmed land that is evicted and replaced by factories also makes some people lose their jobs.

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September 16, 2018, 01:45:34 PM
 #15

The 4-hour work week idea has nothing to do with further cryptocurrency and blockchain adoption.
The idea that people will work less because of the technology innovations and automation is a myth,because the greedy capitalists always want biggers profits.In order to get those bigger profits,they will force their employees to work more.
Well, even if it does not, I am pretty sure it has a lot to do with blockchain technology and in that case, it sure does have some slight rub on cryptocurrency.

We all know that as development of AI, Robotics and Blockchain keeps evolving, there will always at some point be no need to even get things done with the help of humans that much, and jobs surely will be done faster, cost effective and any other advantage you can think of. As much as this sound cool, even with the 4 day workweek thing, a lot will end up losing their jobs.

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Strufmbae
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September 16, 2018, 02:16:59 PM
 #16

4 day work week sounds so fucking good, but realistically it won't happen. Companies like to rip the shit out of people,and term it as more productivity. 4 day workweek would only lower wages down. That article is garbage, the statements aren't well thought of. The world is a horrible place to live in right now, and people only have to discuss useless things.

AI can make impossible be possible,  it can work for about 24hours fastest completion of a project work unlike human can do,  but talking about healthiness as what others have said also is a disaster to human being,  4day work per week sounds cool not just 4day work week.  And basically, i am confusw if everybody is discussing weird but possible things. 

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September 16, 2018, 02:37:38 PM
 #17

If advances in technology and productivity can result in a 4 day work week.

Then perhaps the sooner we witness a mass adoption of bitcoin and crypto currencies, the sooner we may reap the benefits of technological progress and productivity gains supplied by utilizing more reliable crypto currencies over troubled fiat money. Like birds migrating south for the winter, a better migration pattern to crypto currencies could represent a greener pasture for the dawn of future financial and economic progress, which could be defined in terms of algorithmic or artificial intelligence based offerings such as the algorithm bitcoin utilizes to determine supply.


I don't see how exactly Bitcoin would help to install a 4 day work week. Fiat has problems with inflation, in electronic form it has problems with trust, but in general it's functionally very similar to Bitcoin - both are money that can be used to pay people. Is the amount of work hours somehow related to payment methods or what?
Besides, the work week comes from government intervention, so it's generally not good for economy. Workers should negotiate with employers on their own.

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September 16, 2018, 04:15:16 PM
 #18

I don't think people even have jobs in the upcoming decades since the technology has been developing a lot and most of the industries already using the static or programmed robots in future if the artifical intelligence gets developed the manpower will be replaced with the robots so we are not going to have job in a single day for a week.
yes, precisely with the development of technology, people are losing their jobs. just consider factories that use robots and replace humans. Farmed land that is evicted and replaced by factories also makes some people lose their jobs.
That is what is feared by many people in developed countries like Japan, they replace workers with technological progress only in a few fields, there is indeed a lot of controversy in the advancement of this technology, companies want savings for resources and limit excessive payments to workers, other human resources want jobs to be able to support their household, balance must be built very well to keep abreast of technology and they can support others

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September 17, 2018, 10:58:03 AM
 #19

-snip
Okay, maybe we will get to see 4 day work week which means there is apparently no need for more than that in the long run anymore, but my own issue here is that, seeing something like this happening, will also lead to some loss of jobs with robots and AI taking over which is the technology I am sure that would really bring about that.

I know this is not something we can avoid and somehow, it is inevitable, but as it is, it is better people started thinking of the skills they can acquire which they believe will always require humans to do. Just looking at it from that angle!


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September 17, 2018, 11:14:25 AM
 #20

You may want to check this thread in subreddit by entrepreneurs where they talk about successfully / unsuccessfully implementing it. https://www.reddit.com/r/Entrepreneur/comments/4q384t/has_anyone_successfully_implemented_the_4_hour/
I think it would be more realistic to hear it from people who have smaller businesses.
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