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  • Writer's pictureBaljit Kaur

4 day working week at Watford Control

Watford Control Instruments, a manufacturer of voltage stabilisers, has successfully implemented a four-day working week, resulting in increased productivity and profits. The company's history dates back to 1947 when it was founded by Stefan Brod, a Czech refugee with a background in science. Under the leadership of current Managing Director Mark Massetti, the company transitioned to a four-day workweek in 2019, closing on Fridays.

Previously, the company operated on a five-day schedule based on outdated bus timetables. Mark recognised the need for a shift in working hours and was inspired by the growing trend of four-day workweeks in other industries. Despite initial concerns about reducing production by 20%, the company embraced the change, allowing employees to select their preferred working hours within the four-day structure.

Since the transition, Watford Control has seen a 30% increase in turnover and a 50% increase in profits. Employee morale and productivity have also improved, with workers enjoying the benefits of a three-day weekend. The company has experienced minimal turnover, with many long-serving employees returning after retirement to work part-time.

While the four-day workweek has been successful for Watford Control, recruiting younger talent remains a challenge. Mark attributes this to a lack of interest in traditional manufacturing jobs among younger generations. Despite this, the company remains committed to its high-quality business model and prioritises employee satisfaction and retention.

In summary, Watford Control's experience demonstrates that the four-day workweek can be beneficial for smaller businesses, improving morale and productivity. However, it may not be suitable for larger manufacturing companies due to logistical challenges. The company's success highlights the importance of flexibility and employee satisfaction in driving business growth.

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