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Most people are used to working a 9-to-5 schedule, but some businesses opt for a 9/80 work schedule instead. If you’re exploring alternative scheduling techniques for your team, a 9/80 work schedule template can help.
Staffing needs vary across industries. With an assortment of flexible scheduling options, businesses can meet the demands of a changing work landscape.
The shift to remote work has made work-life balance a greater priority. The 9/80 schedule has been gaining traction because of its flexibility for both employees and employers.
The 9/80 schedule is an alternate work schedule that operates on a two-week cycle. Instead of focusing on 40-hour weeks, you can split 80 hours of work into two weeks. This way, team members gain one day off each cycle.
In one week, a team member works four 9-hour days and one 8-hour day. The following week, they’ll work four 9-hour days and have a three-day weekend.
The 9/80 work schedule best suits knowledge-based industries like software development, graphic design, and accounting. Generally, the 9/80 schedule works best for non-customer-facing roles where outputs depend on independent contributions.
The industry you work in, operational needs, and a variety of other factors lead employers to choose the 9/80 work schedule. Large companies like Humana, Lockheed Martin, and American Express have already employed this work schedule to create a more flexible work environment for their employees.
Successfully implementing a 9/80 workweek schedule requires diligent planning and communication. Vacation days, PTO, and sick leave must be carefully accounted for so that an unexpected day off doesn't delay a team’s progress.
Below is an example of how a typical 9/80 workweek looks.
In Week 1, employees will work four nine-hour days for a total of 36 hours. They’ll receive an extra day off on Friday. The following week, they’ll add an eight-hour shift on Friday for 44 hours.
One variation of the 9/80 work schedule allows team members to work the same eight 9-hour days. Then, instead of one 8-hour day and one day off, they can choose to work two 4-hour Fridays.
To help you implement a 9/80 work schedule at your workplace, we've created a free 9/80 work schedule Excel template that you can customize to fit the needs of your business.
Download the template below, or look at our standard 40-hour workweek template.
To use our 9/80 shift schedule template, start with the template and hours provided. Then, customize the employee scheduling template to suit your business’ 9/80 shift scheduling needs.
Ensure that the columns are labeled as days of the week — and don't forget to include enough rows for all your team members. The built-in formula automatically calculates hours to ensure you allocate your scheduled time correctly.
Once your schedule is ready, save it and make a copy. You’ll be able to make quick and effective schedules any time you need them.
Using a work schedule template and manually entering hours may work for a new business or a small team. Once your team starts to grow, you might find that it’s easier to automate this process.
If you want a scalable solution for your growing business, a software system with tracking and proof of work capabilities is a great place to start.
There are many ways you can customize a 9/80 schedule to work for you and your team members.
For example, some team members can work from 8-6 Monday-Thursday and 8-5 Friday for the first week in a period. For the second week, you can schedule nine-hour days from Monday to Thursday from 7-5 and have Friday off.
For paid holidays and paid time off, calculate these as 8-hour workdays and adjust the schedule accordingly. For example, if a holiday falls on a 9-hour workday, add 1 hour to any other day. This way, you can ensure the eight hours are made up and paid for.
Before you implement a 9/80 schedule, you’ll need to develop clear guidelines. In this documentation, you can outline the details and tools needed to create and track hourly shifts.
You might want to start by creating some basic rules.
For instance, team members shouldn't be allowed to switch shifts. When employees switch their off days or working hours, you increase the chance of a miscalculation that results in excessive overtime pay or legal compliance issues.
Team members must also be prepared to use the extra work hour more efficiently and maximize productivity. It is the employer's responsibility to communicate the purpose of the 9/80 work schedule and prepare team members to be as effective as possible.
Finally, always be prepared to re-evaluate the 9/80 schedule and make any necessary changes. During this evaluation phase, ask for feedback on how team members feel about the extra hours in their workday.
With nine-hour days, employees need to be candid about their work-life balance. Your guide should explicitly stress the importance of mandatory breaks. These breaks can reduce burnout and are legal requirements in some states.
The 9/80 work schedule is not the right fit for every business. Before implementing this compressed workweek, you’ll want to review the 9/80 work week advantages and disadvantages.
Employees will likely see the value of an extra day off during the week. It allows them more time for errands, doctor’s appointments, and rest.
When Microsoft Japan experimented with a 4-day workweek for their team in 2019, the results indicated benefits for both employer and employee. In fact, the company found a 40% increase in productivity and reported more satisfied employees.
Team members will be happier, healthier, and have less commuting time to worry about.
Since flexible schedules like the 9/80 schedule lead to more satisfied team members, they also increase employee engagement and productivity.
A 2020 Gallup poll found that a highly engaged workplace can increase profits by up to 21%.
As we experience The Great Resignation, employee retention has become increasingly important. Team members want to feel valued for their contributions. That starts with placing increased importance on mental health.
Work flexibility is a deciding factor for many employees who are job searching. According to Gallup, work-life balance is crucial for 53% of employees considering a new job.
Moreover, retention rates affect an organization's bottom line. A recent Gallup report on the millennial workforce stated millennial turnover costs the U.S. economy an estimated $30.5 billion annually.
The 9/80 work schedule offers an attractive option to address these employee concerns. It also gives businesses an edge in a competitive market.
The benefits of more time spent away from the office are easy to see. However, there are also some distinct disadvantages associated with the 9/80 schedule.
One major drawback of the 9/80 schedule is that extended workdays may be problematic for some team members.
Working an extra hour can be challenging when managing home responsibilities like picking up kids from school and making dinner.
This schedule may also become counter-productive if the additional hour leads to unnecessary stress and burnout.
The 9/80 schedule can also lead to potential staffing issues.
For example, let’s say that an employee wants to take a Friday off. With the 9/80 schedule, half of your staff already has their day off. If you allow this employee to take their day off, you could find yourself short-staffed.
For this flexible work schedule to work successfully, managers must trust their team members and provide them with the tools and support to take advantage of the extra hour added to their workday.
Most team members may commit to a 9/80 work schedule and take the initiative to track and improve their productivity while at work. That said, there’s always a possibility that some people could abuse the system.
The 9/80 schedule is not ideal for every workplace because of industry demands and workplace culture. Some industries may require consistent staff scheduling — especially in customer-facing service-oriented businesses.
The 9/80 work schedule could be demanding for small businesses to implement because of the smaller team size. You’d need a considerable amount of employees on your payroll to justify giving half of them time off every other week.
Hubstaff offers workforce management software to help you track employee hours and implement a 9/80 work schedule.
You can design shift schedules and track employee hours in real-time. This gives you a glimpse into what each member of your team is working on and how long it takes them.
While a 40-hour workweek has been the standard for quite some time, the needs of the modern workforce are changing rapidly. The 9/80 work schedule addresses these situations and provides employees the flexibility they seek.
With some planning, you can implement a 9/80 work schedule that works for your business and your employees.
Hubstaff's employee scheduling software allows managers to quickly build schedules, assign shifts, track hours, and pay employees in one easy-to-use platform. This way, you won’t need to create scheduling templates from scratch.
Employees also have access to a dashboard to track their work hours. These features enhance employee productivity, improve human resources management, and reduce project costs.