Summer Friday’s: All you need to know

summer fridays
Photo by Lap Dinh Quoc

You may believe that giving employees a day or afternoon off during the summer reduces productivity and revenue or that it simply sets a bad example for the rest of the year. However, research shows that when employees are privileged to summer, Fridays are more productive, morale is higher, and turnover is lower.

With more and more businesses realizing the positive impact it can have on employee morale, productivity, and overall satisfaction, the trend of offering summer Fridays has been on the rise.

In this article, you will learn about the importance of summer Fridays, how to implement them, and factors to consider when implementing them.

What are Summer Fridays?

Summer Fridays are a type of flexible scheduling in which employees can either leave the office early or take the entire day off on Friday. These summer hours are typically available on Fridays between Memorial Day and Labour Day.

Types of Summer Friday

You can choose a Summer Friday strategy that works best for you and your team based on how your company and employees operate.

#1. Work Extra Hours in Exchange for Friday Off

Employees work extra hours throughout the week on this type of summer Friday. They keep track of how many extra hours they work, and then on Fridays, they can take the same amount of time off.

#2. Every Friday is a Holiday

This is one of the more generous Summer Friday variations. During the summer, every Friday is off for all employees. This gives them a full day to complete errands and appointments or to begin a long weekend.

#3. Off Every Other Friday

Instead of giving everyone the same Fridays off, stagger people’s Fridays off. For example, half of the company might take the first Summer Friday off, while the other half might take the next Friday off, and so on.

#4. Fridays With a Half-day

If your company cannot afford to lose a full day of productivity every Friday, consider offering half days instead. Workers will spend the first half of the day at work and then leave around lunchtime.

#5. Adjustable Summer Hours

Allow employees to apply their summer hours to different days throughout the week rather than restricting them to Fridays. Summer Fridays allow employees to be flexible and make the most of the summer months. They can take some time to rest and relax before the end of the year.

Why are Summer Fridays Gaining Popularity?

While it’s no surprise that having more time on Friday to do what you want instead of working is popular among employees, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, business owners have discovered that it is increasingly important to recognise the personal and professional stress that their employees may be experiencing.

There are numerous examples of employers strongly encouraging their employees to take part or all of their Summer Fridays off. One company even paid its employees for every 40 hours of PTO they used. This is in stark contrast to previous business environments, where employees were frequently afraid to take vacation days. However, because there are numerous advantages for both business owners and employees, it stands to reason that more employers are providing this benefit.

How do I Implement a Summer Fridays Program?

If Summer Fridays appear to be a good fit for your company, follow the steps below to put them in place.

#1. Establish Your Friday Working Hours and Schedules

Summer Fridays policies do not work the same way for every company; in fact, they may vary even within the same company. Perhaps some team members get an entire Friday off while others work. The following week, the employees who had time off must return to work, while team members who worked now have their day off. Or perhaps your entire team gets to go out every Friday in the early afternoon.

#2. Modify Your Work Hours From Monday to Thursday as Needed

You might not be able to afford to lose eight hours of work per week, but you do want to give your employees Fridays off. In that case, you could provide a shortened workweek, such as a four-day workweek. Monday through Thursday, your employees would work 10 hours a day. That’s 40 hours of work spread out over four days. That means your team can take Friday off without missing out on the eight hours of productivity that a fifth day normally entails.

#3. Make the Necessary Changes to Your Payroll Software’s Schedule

Assume you’re going from four-day, 40-hour workweeks to summer Fridays. It is not enough to simply state the change; you must also update your time tracking and payment procedures. For example, make sure your payroll software processes pay for 10 hours of work Monday through Thursday and none on Friday. Even if your payroll software includes HR services, you should ensure that your HR professionals are ensuring that employees are paid for the correct amount of time. After all, paying for 48 hours per week instead of 40 does nothing for your cash flow.

#4. Incorporate Your New Policy into Your Employee Handbook

Summer Fridays work best when they are committed to winning, just like any other policy. That entails outlining the rules in your employee handbook, informing employees about the new policy, and asking them to sign off on it. Summer Fridays policies should clearly state the time of year in which they apply. Your policy should also specify how Summer Fridays will affect your team’s work schedule on other days of the week. Keep in mind that the policy is subject to change if Summer Fridays prove to be a hindrance to your team’s productivity and thus your company’s bottom line.

#5. Modify The Policy As Necessary

Assume you allow your team to leave work at 1:30 p.m. every Friday. Assume you also start hearing from clients that their work is being rushed. Perhaps it’s because you’ve offered Summer Fridays without incorporating those hours into other days, or because you haven’t otherwise accounted for a shortened time frame in which employees must complete the same amount of work.  

You should also solicit both formal and informal feedback from staff members to determine how the policy is working for them. Are Summer Fridays fulfilling their purpose? Are they being taken advantage of by employees? Do they still believe they can carry out their responsibilities effectively? If this is not the case, your programme should be adjusted accordingly.

#6. Gently Encourage Your Team To Take Time Off

Employees do not always take enough time off, and as an employer, you can help to change that. Simply encouraging your employees to take time off and embrace your Summer Fridays schedule can help them get enough rest. When you make Summer Fridays a priority, employees won’t feel like they’re slacking off or looking lazy in the eyes of their boss. Instead, they’ll realise that their boss is concerned about their work-life balance and genuinely wants them to take advantage of the extra vacation time.

What To Consider When Implementing Summer Fridays

Companies should assess the feasibility and potential impact of summer Fridays before implementing them. Here are some important considerations:

#1. Determine Feasibility

Determine whether the structure and industry of the organisation allow for the implementation of summer Fridays. Because of the need for consistent staffing, some industries, such as retail or customer service, may face difficulties in providing this perk. Companies must determine whether alternative arrangements can continue to provide employees with the benefits of summer Fridays.

#2. Workload Management Plan

Companies should assess how the workload will be managed on summer Fridays. Redistributing tasks, cross-training employees, or hiring temporary help may be necessary to ensure that work is completed efficiently. To ensure a smooth transition and maintain productivity, team members must communicate clearly and collaborate effectively.

#3. Consider Client Expectations

Think about how summer Fridays might affect client expectations and deliverables. Companies should inform clients about the summer Fridays schedule ahead of time and manage their expectations regarding response times and project timelines. Open and transparent communication can aid in the maintenance of strong client relationships while also respecting employee well-being.

Benefits of Offering Summer Fridays to Employees

More human resources representatives and managers in the United States are advocating for summer Friday policies because of the numerous benefits they provide, which include the following:

#1. Make Employees More Productive

According to research, giving employees more time off can boost productivity. Staff members can be motivated to use their work time efficiently and minimise distractions when they know they will have a day off at the end of the week.

#2. Retain Current Employees

 Offering a summer Friday policy increases workplace loyalty. If your most talented employees are satisfied with the policies in place, they are more likely to stay with your company.

#3. Attract Top Talent

Offering a progressive summer Friday policy increases your chances of attracting top talent when recruiting. Job seekers want to work for a company where they believe they will thrive, and companies that offer flexible scheduling are becoming increasingly popular.

#4. Reduce Time Off Requests

As summer approaches, employees request more time off to spend with their families, celebrate holidays, and enjoy the nice weather. Implementing a summer Fridays policy allows your employees to use their PTO for other purposes while also reducing the scheduling work of approving or denying time off requests.

#5. Improve Mental and Physical Health

Allowing employees to work flexible hours and take paid time off (PTO) helps to avoid burnout and overworking, both of which can be harmful to both mental and physical health. Offering summer Fridays can help employees unwind and relax.

#6. Reduce Operating Costs

If your team works in a physical location, giving Fridays off may help you save money on the electricity typically used to cool the office, run the computers, and keep the lights on.

#7. Increase Staff Camaraderie

For companies that offer half-days on Fridays, the anticipation of the time off and all employees leaving together at the same time can foster camaraderie and boost overall workplace morale.

Evaluating the Effectiveness of Summer Fridays

Consider the following to assess the effectiveness of summer Fridays and make any necessary adjustments:

#1. Collect Employee Feedback 

Conduct surveys or feedback sessions to collect employee feedback on the summer Fridays programme. Inquire about what worked well and what could be improved. This feedback can be used to tailor the programme to better meet the needs of employees while also addressing any challenges or concerns.

#2. Keep Track Of Productivity And Performance

Track productivity and performance metrics as summer Fridays are implemented. Examine whether there have been any noticeable changes in employee performance, efficiency, or overall output. This data can provide insights into the impact of summer Fridays on productivity and assist businesses in making informed programme decisions.

#3. Adapt and Adjust

Make necessary changes to the Summer Fridays policy based on employee feedback and performance data. Continuously assess the program’s effectiveness and consider changing aspects such as duration, frequency, or guidelines to better align with employee needs and operational requirements.

How Do You Request Summer Fridays?

The option that is the simplest to implement is often the most successful. Starting your regular workweek an hour earlier each day, for example, can allow you to take off at noon on Fridays while still clocking in a 40-hour workweek. That’s just one example of a shortened workweek.

What Businesses Provide Summer Fridays?

IBM is one of the companies that appear on published lists of employers that offer Summer Hours.

  • Estee Lauder
  • Condé Nast Publications.
  • Viacom
  • The Leaf Group
  • Meredith
  • Vice Media Group is a media conglomerate
  • The foundation of digital media

What are the Summer Friday rules?

Summer Fridays can benefit both your employees and your company, whether your team is in-office, hybrid, or works remotely.

How Long Do Summer Fridays Last?

Summer Fridays are a company benefit in which employees are allowed to leave early – or, at some companies, not work at all – on Fridays during the summer months. The months that employers generally offer Summer Fridays are June, July, and August – essentially Memorial Day through Labor Day.


Finally, summer Fridays are a low-cost perk that can produce real, measurable results such as increased employee morale and loyalty, lower turnover, increased productivity, and improved physical and mental health. And, for the majority of businesses, those advantages will last far beyond Labour Day.


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