Is the 4-day workweek a thing?

I was recently on a Zoom call with a Customer Success Manager who declared he doesn’t schedule meetings on Thursdays because he has a 4-day workweek and Thursday is his during-the-week day off.

For physically demanding jobs, 4-day workweeks, even 3-day workweeks, can be common, since more time is needed to rest from the more grueling manual labor.

But white-collar jobs?

In case you think this is only the case with the most progressive companies, think again.

In an article published this year, TechRadar noted the 4-day workweek was among the 9 biggest work trends of 2022. Sure, work-from-home and better pay and benefits were among the 9… and that probably surprises no one. But the 4-day workweek?

The TechRadar article said that “while plenty of people love the idea of having a three-day weekend as part of their routine, trials and studies do show that moving to a four-day week can often prove beneficial for both staff and companies.

“Microsoft Japan,” Mike Jennings, the article’s author, went on to say, “trialed a four-day work week back in 2019 and found that it led to a 40% boost in productivity and 23% less electricity consumption.”

The article also cites studies in New Zealand and Iceland that found staff were both happier and more productive with a four-day week. 

With an increase in productivity and employee satisfaction, it’s hard to argue with the results, but obviously the 4-day workweek wouldn’t be practical for every industry or company.

What about you? What do you think about the 4-day workweek? Where does it rank on your list of job priorities?

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#4dayworkweek #employeesatisfaction #humanresources #jobseekers #careers #jobs #jobssearch #careercoaching #personalbranding #3dayweekend

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Dave O’Farrell helps his clients shorten their search, earn more money, and get better results. He helps employers soften the blow when they have to let employees go by offering the very best outplacement service on the planet. Reach out to Dave through his LinkedIn page.

Now is the Best Time to Look for a Job

Unemployment rose to 14.7% in April. This is the highest rate since The Great Depression, although this specific statistic only dates back to January 1948. Over 33.5M people have filed an initial unemployment claim in the past seven weeks. With Fridays’ press release, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there were 33M unemployed workers at the end of April (23.1M unemployed + 9.9M not in the labor force who currently want a job).

Nevertheless, let me be clear: look for a job now.

There are not 33M people actively looking for work right now. There are three groups of people who are not looking. First, there are 18.1M furloughed workers who hope to be recalled as the economy recovers. Second, there are 574K discouraged workers* who have given up hope.

Third, there are many people making more money each month on unemployment than they were making in January. They are collecting up to $365 per week from the State of Georgia, plus an additional $600 per week through the CARES Act. That’s a rate of more than $50K per year.

Many of you have asked me how long these benefits will last. In Georgia, if the seasonally adjusted UI rate is 9.0% or above, the maximum number of weeks a person can receive benefits is 20. The Federal benefit of $600 is scheduled to end on July 31. You will be competing for jobs with these folks beginning in August.

Of the 14.3M who are not furloughed or not looking, I estimate two-thirds of them are not yet looking because of the CARES benefits. So, don’t think you are in a job market with 33M seekers; it is more like 5M.

Do everything you can do to find a job now; and leave to God what only He can do.

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*Discouraged workers are those who have looked for a job in the past 12 months but not in the last four weeks.


#unemployment #unemploymentclaims #resume #careercoach #outplacement

Dave O’Farrell helps his clients shorten their search, earn more money, and get better results. He helps employers soften the blow when they have to let employees go by offering the very best outplacement service on the planet. Reach out to Dave through his LinkedIn page.

Sow Good Seed

My dad smoked from the age of nine to 36; he died of lung, brain, and other cancers 46 years later. In fact, the second anniversary of his passing was two days ago. He died 39 days after the diagnosis. Despite the gap in time, his oncologist told my mom there was a cause-and-effect between the two.

We reap what we sow.

In addition to the two 63-year-old clients I mentioned last week, we’ve had other O’Farrell CM clients in the 55+ crowd land jobs. Last Friday, a client landed a job near her fair market value. Saturday morning, the first email I read was from a 65-year-old client who accepted a job at a former employer for 24 hours a week at an amazing hourly rate.

Monday, a client in her mid-50’s accepted a six-figure job. It’s a 25% increase over her old salary. And a 70-year old client accepted his third job in three months. He quit one because he didn’t like it; the other is on hold due to the quarantine.

All six (three men, three women) are in their mid-50’s and up. Two landed six-figure jobs. They have a few more things in common: they have world-class résumés, amazing LinkedIn and Indeed pages, and many hours of interview training. Pardon the shameless plug; they trusted in the Lord AND they worked with me.

Sow seeds by applying for jobs, building relationships, and learning new skills. Sow seeds by allowing me the privilege of recreating your résumé and building a custom-branded LinkedIn and Indeed page.

We will reap what we sow. Maybe in 46 days. Or maybe in 46 years.

Play to Win

We had two 63-year old O’Farrell clients accept job offers this week. Both offers were in their area of expertise. And both were near their fair market value. One is a six-figure job; it took almost seven months to land that position. The other was less than four months, and that included taking February off to visit her daughter in Africa.

Both clients had something in common: they job-searched despite the dire headlines. Here is a report from yesterday, 23 April 2020: “The number of Americans filling for unemployment benefits was 4.427 million last week, bringing the total reported over the past five weeks to over 26 million, equivalent to 16% of the labor force.”

Remember: All you need is ONE job. You don’t need 26 million jobs. The unemployment rate in your home might be as high as 100% right now. It’s your job to solve that problem. You’ve got to play to win.

Many of you are hyper-focused on cutting expenses. Good idea; nothing wrong with that. In addition to reducing expenses, get focused on increasing income. When you solve your income problem, your expense problem improves dramatically. If you are really looking for work, contact me. I can help.

Do yourself and your family a favor: don’t sit around waiting for the economy to bounce back. Fast forward to several months from now when you are asked why you have been looking so long. How does this sound? “I was sitting back collecting those awesome unemployment benefits.”

This week I’ve been thinking about a slogan we use on the O’Farrell Career Management website and in other media. It’s what the two clients above did. It is my message to all of you today:

Get off the sidelines. Get back in the game. Play to win.

The Power of Social Media for Job Search

Dave, Stephen, Sara

Stephen Childs, Dave O’Farrell and Sara Clark

What Do the HR Experts Think?

“Social media like LinkedIn is the way to find people,” said Stephen A. Childs, Director of Human Resources from Panasonic Automotive at a recent JobSeekers meeting in the greater Atlanta area. Mr. Childs, with 20 years’ experience in human resources and talent acquisition, said social media has played a huge role in their talent acquisition process, leadership development, performance management, organizational development and succession planning. “We are developing an in-house website to help us network – with people within Panasonic and the outside world. We can interact with you if you are looking for a job.”

So what’s the best approach to getting noticed on LinkedIn? According to Dave O’Farrell, of O’Farrell Career Management, “There are three key elements to get noticed on LinkedIn. First, it’s imperative to have strong, search engine optimized content (SEO). Second, you must build a large, relevant network – at least 500 connections. And finally, create and maintain frequent, interesting activity. Without all three of these elements, you die a slow death on LinkedIn.”

“It’s much easier now compared to just a few years ago,” said Sara Clarke, Regional Human Resources Manager for Orange Business Services. She noted social media like LinkedIn, “will allow you to find companies and they can find you. “

Once you’ve gotten noticed, take your participation to another level through group participation. According to Stephannie O’Donnell, of O’Farrell Career Management, and organizer of the event, “Not only are groups great for networking with others who have similar interests or industry affiliations; groups are also a good platform to establish yourself as a thought leader by posting relevant content, article links, and posing questions to stimulate discussion.“ She says she has sourced several candidates from groups and checked their levels of engagement prior to interviewing them.

Professionalism and staying current also matter, according to Tanya Turner, Human Resources Generalist at Turner Broadcasting, “Always update your LinkedIn profile. It’s where the action is. And be sure to get a photo that is done professionally.”

Let us know what you think. How have you used LinkedIn in your job search?

By Umah Papachan, guest blogger

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Have You Thought of Entrepreneurship?

new businessAlthough being laid off or downsized is never initially viewed as a good thing, it may serve as your catalyst for change. Traditional thinking says, “If I’m a sales person, I need another sales job.” Have you ever taken inventory of what you liked and disliked about your last job? Ranked what is most important to you? Have you ever considered being your own boss? How about creating a new business?

According to AOL Jobs, 15% of small businesses were established following a layoff. Additionally, the SBA reports that:

  • The 23 million small businesses in America account for 54% of all U.S. sales.
  • Small businesses provide 55% of all jobs and 66% of all net new jobs since the 1970s.
  • The 600,000+ franchised small businesses in the U.S. account for 40% of all retail sales and provide jobs for some eight million people.
  • The small business sector in America occupies 30-50% of all commercial space, an estimated 20-34 billion square feet.

There are several success stories here in the south metro area. Come to the JobSeekers on May 9, 2014 at First Baptist Church, 208 Willow Bend Road, Peachtree City to interact with these small business owners and hear their stories.