Mizuho employees will get to chose how much they want to work.

Generally speaking, jobs in the financial sector come with pretty rigid work schedules. With banking and investment being global affairs, there’s always somewhere in the world where business is being done, so any time a financial institution’s employees aren’t working the company is missing a chance for revenue.

So it’s surprising to see Mizuho Financial Group, one of the largest financial services conglomerates in Japan, offering to let all of its employees start taking not just three-day weekends, but four-day weekends every week, if they feel like it.

The company says the new policy is part of its evolving work style, and follows a shift towards increased telecommuting since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The three or four-day weekend option would be available to roughly 45,000 employees at Mizuho Bank, Mizuho Trust and Banking, Mizuho Securities, and three other companies in the Mizuho Financial corporate family.

Reduced work amounts will come with reduced pay, though Mizuho is keeping things proportional. Employees opting for a three-day weekend/four-day work week, will receive 80 percent of their normal pay, while those choosing four-day weekends will receive 60 percent.

While it’s not as generous as what Microsoft Japan did last year, Mizuho isn’t forcing anyone to switch from their current five-day work week, and so it’s effectively allowing individuals to choose the work/life balance that’s best for them out of the two, three, and four-day weekend options.

Pending final agreement from the employee unions, Mizuho hopes to introduce the new system in December.

Sources: Kyodo via Hachima Kiko, NHK News Web
Top image: Pakutaso
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