Responding to Demand, Companies Go Beyond a Five-Day Work Week

Consulting for Operations Expansion Emerges as a Key Economic Indicator

Jun 22, 2004, 01:00 ET from Circadian

    LEXINGTON, Mass., June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Timid that the economic rebound
 was not here to stay, many companies relied on overtime hours to meet
 increased demand over the past year.  But in recent months, several Fortune
 1000 businesses have turned to consulting firm CIRCADIAN to help them consider
 hiring additional staff, eliminating excess overtime costs, and expanding
 operations beyond the standard five-day work week.  These consulting services
 have emerged as a key predictor of future job growth as the economy continues
 to recover.
     "Back in February and March, we knew people were going to start doing some
 significant hiring, especially in the manufacturing sector," said CIRCADIAN
 president Betsy Connolly.  The Labor Department reported that U.S.
 manufacturers added 21,000 new jobs in April, after cutting jobs for the
 previous 42 months.  (Construction and retail also saw marked growth.)
     CIRCADIAN has worked with nearly 20 companies over the last five months to
 help them examine expanding to six- or seven-day operations.  "It looks as if
 some companies have begun to consider redirecting their profits toward growing
 their capacity," Connolly said.  "The demand has been high enough, and for
 long enough, to warrant the expansion."
     To help other companies considering a similar expansion, CIRCADIAN has
 published a white paper, "Increasing Production Beyond the Five Day
 Operation," available for free download at  In it,
 CIRCADIAN addresses the key issue of correlating management's evaluation of
 increasing production to meet demand, with employees' concerns over expanding
 the work week.  The paper also reveals the downside risks of excess overtime
 hours, four questions a company ask before seriously considering expanding
 operations, and the most effective shift scheduling strategies available.
     "The expansion of the economy creates a great opportunity for management
 and employees to effectively communicate about future business growth, while
 considering the employees' interests as well," Connolly said.
     About CIRCADIAN:  Circadian is the leading international research and
 consulting firm assisting companies with extended hours operations to improve
 profits by increasing productivity and reducing the increased costs, risks,
 and liabilities of human factors.  CIRCADIAN's mission is to empower its
 clients to effectively use extended operations to compete in the global 24/7
 economy.  Extended hours operations encompass all work environments with
 irregular schedules, night and evening shifts, or extended hours, typically
 outside the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.  Since its incorporation by Dr. Martin
 Moore-Ede in 1983, more than half the Fortune 1000 has benefited by working
 with CIRCADIAN.  For more information, visit

SOURCE Circadian