As companies increasingly embrace hybrid work, Fridays appear to be the most recent casualty, with employees not coming in on the last workday.
The global pandemic upended the workplace, leading to a massive adoption of remote and hybrid workflows. Even as many companies are bringing employees back more days during the week, very few want to be in the office on Friday.
According to The Washington Post, Kastle Systems is collected swipe-in data from their security systems installed in 2,600 buildings. Tuesdays had the highest in-person attendance, coming in at 50%. Mondays only had 41%, but Fridays were the lowest of all, with only 30% in-person attendance in June.
“It’s becoming a bit of cultural norm: You know nobody else is going to the office on Friday, so maybe you’ll work from home, too,” said Peter Cappelli, director of the Center for Human Resources at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, told the Post. “Even before the pandemic, people thought of Friday as a kind of blowoff day. And now there’s a growing expectation that you can work from home to jump-start your weekend.”
Interestingly, employers have not yet settled on the best option going forward. Some are doubling down on their attempts to get people back in the office on Fridays, while others are at least trying to make Fridays a little easier with moves like “Zoom-free” Fridays.
Still others, like tech company Bolt, are switching to a four-day work week after an overwhelmingly positive response from employees.
“There was no hesitation: Everybody was like, ‘Sign me up,’ ” Angela Bagley, the company’s head of employee experience, told the Post. “And it was amazing: We kept getting the job done. Managers were onboard, people kept hitting their goals. And they come back on Mondays energized and more engaged.”
One thing is clear: Companies still have much to figure out when it comes to optimizing their way forward in a post-pandemic “new normal.”