Leicester based accountants MNE Accounting has rewarded its staff by introducing a shorter working week. Since the start of the year, staff have been treated to an afternoon off with no effect on their salary.
Whilst this policy change is currently being trialled, it is something managing director Tim Emmony would like to incorporate long-term.
He commented: “We delivered strong growth in 2018 and I think last year’s success is partly down to our ability to offer a service that really resonates with forward-thinking business owners. But of course, nothing is achieved without our fantastic team!”
“In some ways this is a ‘thank you’ for their hard work. However, our levels of productivity have increased, so we know that working fewer hours is achievable long-term whilst still continuing to grow the firm and delivering the same quality of work.”
Mr Emmony admits that whilst the case for a shorter working week was easy to make internally, he was a little unsure how existing clients would respond.
“A lot has been said about work-life balance, productivity and staff flexibility. It’s now quite common for smaller businesses like ourselves to allow staff the flexibility of working from home. However, despite reading a few success stories from larger companies who have introduced a 4 day week, the idea of a shorter working week is still a relatively new concept.”
“Admittedly, this made me a little apprehensive about how our clients would react to us doing this, but actually they all think it’s a great idea – we’ve had lots of very positive comments.“
Mr Emmony set up MNE 6 years ago and the firm now employs 15 members of staff. Besides compliance work, MNE acts as an outsourced finance department for small and large companies throughout the UK.
Technology and the automation of tasks is an important feature of MNE’s service and it’s partly the reason Mr Emmony says the firm was comfortable with introducing this new policy.
“We’ve really embraced technology, software and automation. We’ve automated certain tasks meaning we can get through far more work, deliver a faster service and focus on offering the advice that really makes a commercial difference to our clients. Of course by automating what were time consuming tasks, the knock-on effect is our fees are more competitive than traditional firms too.”