A socially sustainable life


WHAT: Several reports indicate that the phenomenon of the “life puzzle” is now more about creating a functioning life outside of work, where quality of life in private life has become more important than letting career and job go first. In the municipality of Östersund, where a strategy for a flexible workplace with individual agreements was adopted in 2021, an evaluation was recently carried out in which the HME index increased significantly between 2020 and 2021 across all measurement points and throughout the organization. In Iceland, between 2017-2021, a test was carried out to shorten working hours to a 4-day working week. The study showed a maintained productivity, despite fewer hours worked, and an increase in the well-being of the employees who participated in the test.

SO WHAT: A more flexible work situation and fewer hours worked both contribute to increased well-being. As we see shifts in priorities where lifestyle more often goes before choosing a place of work, we will probably also be able to see increased demands for fewer working hours per week, especially if this can be justified by maintaining productivity. The new attractive and more sustainable lifestyle that is now emerging, also contributes to more sustainable people with increased well-being, and will be required to enable us to make sustainable choices as consumers.