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Four-day working week set to stay at Atom bank

Challenger bank Atom has formalised a four-day working week policy after a successful trial

Challenger bank Atom has made a four-day working week permanent after a successful trial over the past year.

In November 2021, the app-based bank introduced a four-day working week for its then 430 employees, with no change on salaries. This came after flexible working, introduced during the Covid-19 lockdown, proved a success.

Now, the bank has made the new working arrangement a company policy after a successful year where it hit its business targets.

Anne-Marie Lister, chief people officer at Durham-based Atom, said: “Moving to a four-day week has not been without its difficulties, however, it is one of the most transformative things we’ve done as a company.

“Since we launched our trial in November 2021, we have not only seen a more productive, healthier, and – crucially – happier workforce, but our customer service metrics are at record highs and more people are looking to start a career with Atom. It took a lot of planning, communication and listening to make it work, but having started out as a pilot, we have now confirmed the new working structure into people’s contracts.

“Sceptics may argue that a business couldn’t grow under a four-day week – however, this year has been one of continued progress and development at Atom. Customers have flocked to the bank in record numbers and the service we have offered them remains among the best in the country. With our latest capital raise allowing us to fuel further growth, we are confident that we will see another fantastic year for the business and our people as we move into 2023.”

In the past 12 months, Atom has grown its total customer base by 80,000 in 2022, up 77% on 2021. The bank said savings balances are up 96% to over £5bn.

Atom Bank, which delivers its products and services through an app for mobile devices, received its banking licence in 2015 and opened its doors to the public in October 2016 following an invite-only launch.

In June this year, more than 3,000 workers at 60 companies began a coordinated, six-month trial of a four-day working week in the UK, marking the world’s biggest pilot scheme for a shorter work week so far.

Organised by 4-Day Week Global in partnership with think tank Autonomy and the 4-Day Week UK Campaign, the trial has seen businesses – including a number of technology companies – adopt a reduced working week with no loss of pay from June to December 2022.

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