One of the 200 workers in a trial of a four-day week at New Zealand trustee company Perpetual Guardian says she doesn't know anyone at the company who wants to return to the old routine.

Kirsten Taylor said she has been able to catch up on chores at home and also spend more time with her kids.

She also said that the shift has had a significant impact on the office, which has become quieter as staff work harder to squeeze all their duties into four days, the Guardian reported.

Perpetual Guardian CEO Andrew Barnes first announced the trial in February, saying it would run from March to mid-April.


In contrast to other comparable initiatives, the workers' salaries have remained the same and the length of the workday has not increased over the course of the experiment.

"We have seen cases where employees work longer hours for fewer days of the week or they earn 75 per cent of their full-time salary, but that is not what we are doing here," Barnes told the Herald at the time.

READ MORE: Kiwi firm Perpetual Guardian to test four-day week with workers on full pay

The trial could also perhaps have implications for the broader New Zealand workforce in that it's being observed by two academic institutions.

Should the experiment prove successful, it could have broader repercussions across other Kiwi businesses.

Barnes said staff have bought into the initiative and desperately want it to work.

"I don't feel the pressure for it to succeed, but I think my staff do. People are telling me we have to make this work for New Zealand," he told the Guardian.

"From my point of view, it's very difficult as an owner of a business to see any way that this is not positive for me at the moment."


According to research from the World Economic Forum, New Zealand ranked 20th among OECD countries in terms of the number of hours worked annually.

New Zealand workers put in 1752 hours in 2016, well ahead of the 1363 hours the Germans did.

Other countries on the lower end of the scale included Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands and France.

Despite enjoying the shortest working hours among OECD member countries, Germany manages high productivity levels. Data shows German workers are 27 per cent more productive than his or her British counterpart (who works 1676 hours a year).

The trial is being watched closely in the local market by other Kiwi companies, which have also expressed interest in rolling out a similar policy if it works.

Yellow chief executive Darren Linton and Sudima Hotels & Resorts director of human resources Phillipa Gimmillaro both said that they would be interested in seeing the results of the trial.

READ MORE: More Kiwi companies eyeing four-day working week

"To us, our staff are like family, and work-life balance is vital," Gimmillaro said.

"We'll be interested in seeing the results of this four-day work week and reviewing whether this or something similar could be a good fit for us and the wider accommodation industry."

Taylor said that one of the biggest advantages of the trial was spending time with her family, saving money on childcare and completing tasks on her to-do list.

However, Taylor said the initiative suited her "head down, bum up" style of work, which isn't necessarily the case for everyone.

Christine Brotherton, head of people and capability for the company, told the Guardian few members of staff hadn't "quite realised that if we have three days off, the four at the office have to be very productive."