What Is a 9/80 Work Schedule?
The 9/80 work schedule is a compressed schedule that allows employees to work full-time in longer daily stints so that they gain an extra day off. In standard work schedules, in two weeks, employees have to work for 10 days to complete 80 hours. In 9/80 work schedules, employees complete 80 hours of work in 9 days and get an extra day off.
For the first week, employees work for 44 hours. For the second week, employees work for 36 hours. This way, they complete 80 hours and get an extra day off every second week.
How a 9/80 schedule works
Let us take a simple example. In the first week, an employee would work Monday to Thursday for nine hours. S/he would work on Friday for eight hours. This makes the first week’s total forty-four hours. In the second week, the employee would work Monday to Thursday for nine hours each; Friday will be an additional day off. The second week’s total would come to thirty-six hours. This way, the employee has worked for eighty hours with an additional day off.
For payroll purposes, you can calculate work over a two-week period instead of the regular weekly calculation. Otherwise, your system will show that overtime pay for 4 hours is to be given to the employee. You can also treat one half of Friday’s work (4 hours) in the first week and the second half in the second week.
Benefits of a 9/80 work schedule
There are a lot of strong reasons to implement the 9/80 work schedule.
Employees on a regular roster are entitled to eight days off in a month. On the other hand, employees on a 9/80 work schedule get two extra days off. This gives them a chance to manage their personal commitments better, perform chores or go on vacations. Employees tend to feel more engaged because of this, given that their personal commitments are out of the way.
This work schedule is better suited for those tasks which require employees to sit for long stretches. This could lead to a better project completion rate and an increase in productivity.
Challenges of a 9/80 work schedule
The 9/80 work schedule comes with its own set of challenges.
The longer workdays can become tiring on a continuous basis. Whether it is used for regular chores or certain special occasions, this work schedule can become challenging. While in the larger picture, there are pros regarding productivity, there can also be problems related to focus and concentration.
Roster-wise, payroll can become a little complicated if you have employees working on a 9/80 work schedule and standard work schedule. There can be staffing challenges on the extra days off that are given to employees on 9/80 work schedules. The flip side to this is that it is not necessary that customers may be available during the extra hours. This can make your team members can feel a drop in morale if there are no tasks assigned to them.
There are challenges with unplanned leaves and overtime because the typical workdays are of nine hours and not eight.
Is a 9/80 work schedule suitable for your business?
There is no fixed parameter or metric that can give a yes or no answer to this question. A few factors, such as the nature of work, industry compliances, size of the workforce, etc., dictate this choice.
Heavily customer-facing businesses tend to avoid this work schedule, primarily because a 9/80 work schedule does not account for peak or lean times. However, if it is an internal-facing role, 9/80 work schedules can be a perfect fit. If your business can’t afford to have an extra day off every other week, you can either avoid the 9/80 work schedule or have a backup plan around it.
Your staffing and cash flow resources can play a very important role in making this decision. If you have longer cash flow cycles and limited funds to cover overtime expenses, this schedule might become challenging.
Finally, if your employees are not willing to get this schedule implemented, it might be challenging to adopt a 9/80 work schedule.
Make scheduling easier with the right tools
Before implementing a 9/80 work schedule, you might want to discuss the plan with the management and employees in an open forum. If you decide to go ahead with it, you will need two important elements for implementing the 9/80 work schedule – an official policy for employees to be guided by and a scheduling and time-tracking tool that helps you digitize and automate shift planning.
KNOW, an app for managing your distributed workforce, can help you schedule shifts, track clock-in/out, and generate time reports in minutes. Book a free demo and get started today!