Over half (57%) of Irish office workers believe that a four-day working week is likely in the near-future as technology makes work practices more efficient, according to a new survey by Ricoh.
The research, commissioned by Ricoh Europe and conducted by Coleman Parkes, involved 4,580 office workers from across 24 countries, including 150 from Ireland. The study found that 43% of Irish workers expect all or part of their roles to be automated within the next five years as a result of technological advancements.
The survey also revealed that salary (54%), flexible working hours (39%), learning opportunities (38%) and a work-life balance (37%) are the top priorities for workers when looking for a job.
In terms of flexible working, more than a third (38%) of those surveyed cited it as an approach that would increase productivity in the workplace. Moreover, 35% revealed that the opportunity to work remotely more often would also boost output, with 31% identifying better tools to facilitate seamless remote working as an impactful strategy.
Speaking this week, Director at Ricoh Ireland & UK, Chas Moloney said, "There is no doubt that the concept of the traditional workplace has changed significantly in recent years. Interest in and appetite for a four-day work week is growing – people want to work less hours but be more effective and productive with the time they spend working."
He added, "Therefore, it’s very disappointing that Irish business leaders are not recognising this trend and adopting more flexible ways of working to motivate, encourage and retain staff. After all, a happier workforce often equates to increased employee productivity, business performance and company growth."