2023-02-01 General

GeBrax and the 4-day week

GeBrax and the 4-day week:

The weekend starts Friday!

Working 10 hours, 6 days a week - that was the law in the days of the German Empire, around 1900 AD. Before the Second World War, the average working time was about 46 hours and in times of the economic miracle 49 hours, distributed over 6 working days. It took until the 1960s for the 5-day week to become a reality for many workers in Germany as a result of trade unions and pressure from the population.

Good working and living conditions as well as the family were in focus. The newly gained free time on family weekends also benefited the economy, as consumption for leisure activities increased.

After the 5-day week was established, no one could imagine returning to the old model. 

Since this progress another 60 years have passed. The (working) world has changed a lot today, just as it did then. The opportunities and needs of employees have changed. In these times of a shortage of skilled workers, it is important to consider what makes an employer attractive today and what attributes are important to employees. In addition to an appropriate salary, many young employees focus on work-life balance and the opportunity to develop.

The desire for flexible work models has been around for many years, and the Corona pandemic has pushed it once again. Home office, desk sharing and also reduced working hours are forms of work that have been successfully implemented abroad and are also increasingly finding their way into German companies.

GeBrax GmbH has taken a closer look at the 4-day work week model and set the course for a 6-month test phase. To enable the start on 01.07.2022, the weekly working hours (with full wage compensation) were reduced and customers and suppliers were informed about the new availability (Mondays to Thursdays).

There were concerns in advance that a shorter week could lead to internal problems. The increased daily workload for employees could cause more stress, decrease manufacturing production output, and lower package volume in shipping. At the end of the test phase, it was clear to all employees, in all departments, without exception, that none of these fears had come true. On the contrary, the high level of motivation had slightly increased productivity. It was also evident that not only had the well-being of the employees increased, but costs had also been saved within the company and for commuting to work. The employees and the management agreed: The 4-day week stays!

At GeBrax, no one can imagine going back to the old model.


Statista (2023): Wochenarbeitszeit in Deutschland in den Jahren 1871 bis 1990, in:,die%2040%2DStunden%2DWoche,Abgerufen: 24.01.2023

IG Metall (2016): Wem gehört die Zeit?, in:, Abgerufen: 23.01.2023

Stern NEON (2019): Work-Life-Balance statt Nächte im Büro? Millennials machen die wenigsten Überstunden, in:,Arbeitsmarkt%20und%20Berufsforschung%20herausgefunden%20hat, Abgerufen: 23.01.2023

Presseportal (2021): Flexible Arbeitsmodelle: Ein Wunsch vieler Mitarbeiter, ein Gewinn für Unternehmen Starke Impulse durch Corona - Trend wird anhalten, in:, Abgerufen: 23.01.2023

Kriwet, H. (2004): Woher stammt der Slogan "Samstags gehört Vati mir"?, in:,sie%20sogar%20bei%2049%20Stunden, Abgerufen: 23.01.2023

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GeBrax GmbH
Obere Hommeswiese 41-45
57258 Freudenberg
Tel.: +49 2734-28474-0
Fax : +49 2734-28474-10