#2 - Would you do it if it also meant you made 80% of your current comp? Why or why not?
Someone asked something similar about 4 years ago, but I wanted to see how the sentiment has changed and what you think :).
Therefore we do not get paid for productivity but for market rates. Obviously having a high value allows the company the freedom to pay us more, but all else equal the lower cost employee will should hired
The rest of the developed world does not have such things, yet 40 hour work weeks are still commonplace.
Japan has the salaryman that works much more than 40 hrs iirc.
When my first child was born, I dropped down to 3 days a week, at 60% pay/vesting/etc., but full medical (Google was awesome about it). After a few years, I moved to a new position that I felt really passionate about (Makani at Google[x]), and went up to 4 days a week to make that possible. After a few years there and the birth of another child, I left Alphabet and now work 2 days a week at Elemeno Health (who are hiring for a full time Lead Engineer, BTW; see https://angel.co/company/elemeno-health/jobs).
It's really life-changing. I've been able to be a much more involved parent than I ever could have working full time. My wife also works part-time [more like 80%] and it's such a big plus.
If you want to try it, and can find a supporting company, true work-life balance is amazing. You may have to pick the right projects, that are well-suited to a reduced duty cycle, but with the right fit, it works great.
Do u have to build a large reputation in that company so that they let you do whatever you want?
Or do you apply for these 2 days a week jobs that offer medical and all that?
It was company policy that if you worked at least 50% time, you got full medical. They had standard procedures and forms for it, but still, it was pretty rare. You needed approval up to VP level IIRC. My boss was a director, so that took care of two levels of approval to start with, and his boss [who didn't know me well] trusted his opinion, so it was approved pretty fast, on a see-how-it-goes basis. It went well, so I stayed at 60% for about 3 years, before deciding I wanted to move on.
I don't know how you'd get a job at Google at that duty cycle from the outside; I did hear of one person coming in at 80%, but it's got to be a hard sell.
The 40% job I'm working now was a pretty special case in a number of ways. I was already an adviser of the company before working there. I then started working at 40% for stock and minimum wage, since I didn't need paying for a while and they couldn't afford me at the time anyway. When I'd vested out the stock, just as my COBRA ran out, we negotiated that my salary would go up to maintain the same total comp, but then down by 60% of the cost of medical, and they'd cover the other 40%. You can do these things at small startups; everything's negotiable. At a big company, it's going to be a lot less flexible.
The minuses of part-time work are pretty obvious: you have fewer work hours per week, but the same amount of overhead; you're harder to reach, since you've effectively got longer weekends; people aren't really sure if you're committed to the project or just slacking off.
However there are also pluses. The biggest one is that you have more mulling-problems-over-in-the-shower hours per work hour, which can make your work hours a lot more productive. A similar one is that if you're ever waiting on back-and-forth with other folks for information, approval, code reviews, etc., you get more hours of those per work hour as well. Another is that you take far fewer vacation and sick days. When my usual schedule was M-W, if I or a child was sick on a Monday, I'd just work Thursday to make it up. And I never needed a vacation day to take a long weekend, get shopping done during working hours, go to the doctor, or anything like that.
Communication with your coworkers is key, so that they know what to expect from you. And be sure to work within your company's culture. If you'd answer an email on the weekend, then you should on your day off. But it goes both ways: they shouldn't regularly ask you to come in on a day off if they're not asking others to come in on the weekend.
I would love to work fewer days per week, and use the extra time to focus more on my personal development & side projects. However, at my current level of discipline, I'd be fooling myself if I said I would use the time productively.
That said, the idea is still very tempting and I intend to do it in the next couple of years. In the meantime, I fully enjoy all of my 24 PTO days and make use of our policy for getting 5 extra unpaid days without justification.
I know of only one instance of a 3-day work week. The guy, a developer, is using the other days for graduate studies.
2. Yes. I did this too. Although technically I negotiated to reduce to a 32 hours week instead of a pay increase. But I have the option of going back to a 5 days week with a 20% pay increase. Software engineers generally earn pretty good wages so I'd prefer to have the time than the extra money.
2: Maybe. Have my hours been reduced by 20%? My workload? Will we have 25% more staff?
Any place I've worked that contemplated allowing people to go on a 4-day schedule expected 10-hour days, which ends up being appealing to very few.
2. Yes. Less pay for less work makes sense to me. My productivity would likely go up, but at the same time, I'm just more concerned about not having my work take over my life. If 80% of my pay is what it takes to get there, then it's a trade off I'm willing to make.
2) Maybe if I lived in Europe, but I'm in the US, and I quite like being able to afford a decent home + benefits
I don't know if I'd do it now, though. 9-5 with a reasonable commute isn't bad. I don't want to get home at 8 and "start my day" a couple hours before bedtime.
Would I take an 20% paycut? Nah.
20% off current comp also means I'm still comfortably middle-class. So it would be a huge net gain to my quality of life. (If I didn't have a software engineer's salary I would not be saying that!)
That would not be a fair discount because the number you see on your paycheck is not the full amount the company is paying to employ you. They also pay for benefits, payroll taxes, equipment, office space, management overhead, etc.
The all-in cost of an employee is closer to 150% of the number on your W2. So assuming your output goes down 20% you should be giving up 30% of your W2 salary to compensate your employer for that loss, not 20%.
So 20% on the salary.
*And, that amount goes down relative to salary changes.
After that, if the company is paying for 100% of health care that can have a big impact of course but I wouldn't roll that into this.
Equipment, office space, overhead is separate from salary. I do not suggest bundling those together as it creates a false view of the costs of these type of decisions.
I understand what you are trying to say but I think it is not how I would look at it with my CFO hat on.
On my current job, I work 80% because we have a daughter now and like the extra day with her. I also work from home, which adds more time for her on working days.
I think right now, the most important thing I can do is spend time with my kid, soon kids ;) It is only a couple of years until they also start going to kindergarten and school and also have a schedule.
So I took almost three months of Fridays off, and it was _by far_ the most productive and happy time I had - remote work and flex time was nice, but having a clear separation between work and personal time was even better.
There are a lot of advantages to a free business day.
I immediately noticed an improvement to my overall happiness when switching to my current work schedule.
Americans should have more days off but not by squeezing the existing work into a shorter period.
I suspect I'd be happiest with 2-3 days a week, with the rest of the time being put into education/personal projects (with a proportional paycut).
2 - yes. I would just try to get a job with more money if it wasn't enough :).
2. I made 60% of my previous salary but I'm fortunate enough that this covered living expenses. The 2 additional days off made me richer than any raise could.
2 maybe. I don’t want to climb the corporate ladder. I want to start a business. I need free time to polish my skills on that front.
But I prefer 4*10 hours
I've talked to some people who are in a period of their life where they wouldn't want to know what to fill it with and like being at work 5 days a week.
It's strange to me that some people don't know how to fill their day when they are not at work. My personal todo list is always full!
Big pay cut, but worth it.
2. Maybe? 'Murican healthcare is quite the yoke.
I utilize all 7 days to work on my professional & personal projects
To do everything sustain-ably and optimize output, for some projects, I dedicate couple of hrs for 4 days and for some only a day and for some everyday.
How you time-box your work for maximum potential is a personal discovery and the strategies vary based on the person, environment and the nature of the project.
So if we are talking about weeks, I have 7 days to get things done which are important in my life and I will neither follow 40hr work-week not 4-days a week. I will see the project, where it stands against all things in life, put it somewhere in my 7 day schedule, see if this schedule works and go ahead with the learnings each week.