Is it unprofessional to work (4) 10 hour days vs the standard (5) day work week?

Is it too soon to ask for this if I've only been with the company for 3 months?

Background: I work in process improvement so I am not needed every day as a front-line employee. From a work-content standpoint I could surely pull this off because on the 10 hour days, I could simply save my office/computer time for the end of the day when I would be staying longer than others.

Concern with question no. 1: My concern is that it may be viewed by some as not a professional schedule.

Concern with question no. 2: I am also concerned that since I just started here in Jan, it may be too soon to ask for something this unique.








Solitaire's picture

Be prepared to answer why you are requesting this. Some companies are happy to grant flexible working hours where (for example) the employee works at an office a long commute from home, or due to child-care arrangements. If it's just because you fancy having every Friday off, they are not likely to look on this as favourably.

Also consider their concerns and objections (as much as you can) and have an answer ready. For example if you manage a team, they may be concerned that you won't be available for 20% of the time to manage them. How can you address this?

Also if you work for a larger company there could be information on flexible working hours policies on your intranet or in your new starter pack. Do some research yourself before talking to your boss.

It seems to me that on balance it is a bit too soon to ask for this. If you needed this flexibility then your manager may question why you didn't bring this up at interview. If you've had a recent change in circumstances though it may be appropriate to ask now rather than waiting until you are more settled and have a better relationship with your boss.

Good luck,


naraa's picture
Training Badge

 I work 3 days a week but i get payed 3/5 of the salary i was getting paid when working full time. I started working 4 out of 5 days, end up working full time and drop down agaín on work hours after having kids.

I think companies are more willing to flex work hours more than employees think.  What i have hardly seen is employees willing to get a pay cut as a result of that flexibility, and reduction in work hours.

While i think one can be much more productive working on a schedule that best suit their needs, i don't really think the work of 5 days can be done in 4, not constantly. Maybe that of 4,5.  

In general i see as a very positive sign when people are also willing to give in as a result of getting something out.  And the oposite is also true i see as a very negative sign when people want something out but are not willing to give something in.  I am a lot more flexible and forward thinking with regards to working schedules than anyone else i have worked with, but i would be suspecious if somebody working for me asked to work 4 out of 5 days a week and being paid the same they just negotiated 3 months ago.  I don't think three months is enough time to develop that trust relationship that allows one to negotiate that.  If your circumnstances have changed or if you always wanted it but didn't have the courage to ask when interviewing be willing to give something in to get what you want, like saying you are willing to get a parcial salary cut, 9hours a day to me is more reasonable than 10, and that you would come to work any friday should it be necessary, of course provided then you would get full salary.

If you can, wait a bit longer to ask for it, wait until you can ask without doubting what the consequences might be.  You don't have to wait until you know the answer but wait until you know regardless of the answer there will be no harm in asking.  You can do that Once you are confident that your boas will see that you will get the same amount of work done, or perhaps even more out of sight (late hours) than you are now.


TomW's picture
Training Badge

As a manager, I'd worry more about the quality of work from someone working 10 hour days. I've seen the work that people put out after several 10 hour days in a row (Thursday afternoon of a week doing all 10 hour days). It's not as good as the same people do when only working 8 hour days (Friday afternoon of a normal week).

markbyantaylor's picture

I don't think there is any problem with you starting to raise as a "possibility" in the future.  As with the above postings you really need to be able to detail why this is good for you AND the company.

If the company already has flexible working in place then you might find them receptive and helpful.  If they haven't, it might be worth asking some discreet questions over why.

If I was the company, I would be against the idea.  You haven't been there long enough, you're not proven enough for me, why would I want 10 hours for 4 days rather than 5 days, why didn't you mention in interview, etc.  There maybe a good solid reason behind your thinking that I can get behind (such a child care needs) - but I'm not seeing it from the above.


cim44's picture
Training Badge

Other considerations.  These are not "hard" factors but will have an impact on your performance down the road.

  • Are you going to be inconveniencing your other team members? I've been on a team where a reduced work day / pay was used and it did not work.
  • Do people in your work group work overtime by habit?  If yes, then you might be seen as getting a free day off.
  • Does the day have to be Friday or Monday?

All to say that, in addition to the above, consider the impact on your peers separately from the formal programs the company or your manager might offer.  If you are in a terminal career position fine.  But if you are looking to move up you may not endear yourself to others.