Plymouth law firm Portcullis Legals becomes media sensation after moving staff to four-day working and giving them a pay hike.
A Plymouth law firm has found itself at the centre of worldwide attention after becoming possibly the first in the UK to switch to a four-day week – and now wants to tell other businesses how and why it did it.
Portcullis Legals, which made the move so staff are less stressed and more productive, also gave its workers a pay rise, to prove it was not a cost-cutting exercise, and said it has all worked out wonderfully.
Since the story was broken by Business Live journalist William Telford in May 2019, Portcullis has been bombarded with media interest, and has featured in national, regional and legal publications and received tens of thousands of views on social media.
So now Portcullis managing director Trevor Worth, who came up with the idea, will host a free seminar exploring the concept of four-day working and how, he says, any firm can do it, no matter what size.
Mr Worth said the shift to four-day working had increased productivity and improved customer service and said: “Our staff have been more motivated and productive – I’m delighted that we’ve been able to make it work and provide an even better service for customers, and a great working environment for our team.
“Values and purpose are very important to us, as is the wellbeing of every team member.”
A four-day week is an arrangement where a workplace has employees work over the course of four days per week rather than the more customary five.
The popularity of the initiative has spread across small, medium and even multi-national firms around the globe in recent years.
Successful schemes have seen employees working fewer hours but being far more productive with their time – meaning they are often happier, more motivated and driven to succeed.
A study of a trial at a New Zealand financial firm found workers were 20% more productive – improving both profits and staff wellbeing.
So Portcullis – which has been helping people across Devon and Cornwall with wills, trusts, probate and powers of attorney for more than 30 years – ran its own five-month trial after Mr Worth did a year’s worth of research.
The company, which has nine staff and works from the innovative Law Store in Plymstock, Plymouth, is now fully implementing the initiative.
“I’ve contacted businesses far and wide to find out the benefits and pitfalls of the four-day week, working with academics and industry leaders to find out the best way to apply the four-day week to Portcullis,” he said. “The response has been extraordinary and there’s a real passion to help other firms achieve a happier working week for their staff.