AN IT company is set to trial their own version of the four day work week: the nine-day fortnight.

A shortened working week is fast becoming a trend in the UK as firms seek ways to boost productivity and attract the best talent.

Cloud 9 Insight, a digital transformation consultancy based in Brighton, decided to make the change after employee engagement surveys showed staff wanted to compress their hours.

CEO, Carlene Jackson, founded the company in 2010 and now employs 35 staff.

Carlene was concerned that compressing five days into four would lead to longer work days for her employees. 

The Argus: Carlene JacksonCarlene Jackson

She said: “We were concerned this could lead to the opposite of the intended outcome – with staff working much longer hours on work days and not being able to have dinner with their partners or to put their children to bed in the evening.

“So we came up with what you might call a Third Way – the nine-day fortnight. Under this scheme, employees would have every other Friday off, while only being asked to add 30 minutes to their normal working day. 

“We are also consulting on implementing an additional twist on this so that the other Friday in the fortnight becomes a ‘strategy, innovation and learning day’ to maximise team working, entrepreneurial thinking and to accelerate career progression.

"Staff would increase their hours from 7.5 to eight hours each day for nine days and would have a day off on the tenth day without their remuneration changing. 

“Therefore, the net loss to the business would be three hours per person per fortnight, though this is not being viewed as a loss in reality. 

Carlene, who has over 25 years industry experience and established her first business aged 17, believes that the nine day fortnight will help to reduce workplace procrastination. 

She said: "Procrastination is a significant issue in any business and we believe the nine-day fortnight will lead to less procrastination, easily making up for the loss of those three hours."

Cloud 9 Insight is consulting employees and taking professional advice on this proposal, with the intention being to implement a trial of the nine-day fortnight at some point over the summer.