Since 2020, ManpowerGroup Serbia has been operating as an independent cluster for Southeast Europe, providing the opportunity for more flexible business models. With more of an onus on flexibility, the company started a pilot project of a four-day working week in October 2021, with the goal of bringing fewer working hours to happier, healthier and more engaged staff.
90.5% of employees stated that they are empowered to perform their work activities more efficiently.
That project was such a success that the Serbian branche of the international organisation has decided to permanently implement the four-day workweek. With it, ManpowerGroup became the first Serbian company to launch such a plan. 90.5% of employees stated that they are empowered to perform their work activities more efficiently. Meanwhile, 97% of employees report it had a positive impact on the balance of private and business. Now, all internal employees in Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Slovenia will only work four days a week.
Four-day working week as a competitive advantage
It comes at a time where human capital is more important and valuable than ever before, the company said in an official statement. “We have a responsibility to take care not only of our employees and processes, but also of the employees and processes of a large number of other companies”, said Aleksandar Hangimana, Managing Partner at ManpowerGroup SEE.
“As leaders in our industry, we prioritise story-doing and constantly drive waves of positive change.”
Based on ManpowerGroup’s position in aiming to drive innovative workforce solutions across the world, the company seems aware of its position. “As leaders in our industry, we prioritise story-doing and constantly drive waves of positive change”, Hangimana added. “We are looking forward to sharing the experience of the four-day project and other legal entities in order to bring the labour market of Serbia and the region closer to the most competitive European markets.”
Will others follow?
While the 4-day working week will only be implemented at ManpowerGroup SEE, its Netherlands-based counterparts will keep a watchful eye on the process of their Southeastern European colleagues. “We think a 4-day working week could be a terrific change to our working conditions”, ManpowerGroup Netherlands said in a comment to ToTalent. “We’re currently delving into it whether it could potentially be a success for the Netherlands.”