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The Advocate Digital Edition: Sweden’s six-hour day may not work here...

This article is from the October 13 issue of The Advocate Digital Edition. To subscribe , visit

A MOVE by Swedish businesses to a six-hour working day might not work in Australia but it was important businesses encouraged good work-life balance. That’s according to the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Michael Bailey, who said the six-hour day model was being formed in a country with a different economy to Australia’s .

Businesses across Sweden are implementing a shorter working day to give workers more time at home or doing things they enjoy. One business, Stockholm-based app developer Filimundus, found the move did not reduce productivity .

Sweden had a high tax economy with more government support available for citizens, and focused on advanced manufacturing, Mr Bailey said. ‘‘ If you were to look at this move you couldn’t do it in isolation.’’ However Australian businesses needed to increase productivity, and good work-life balance was part of that, he said.

Devonport Chamber of Commerce and Industry president and Collins Real Estate principal Stacey Sheehan said the move to a sixhour day would be great if it increased flexibility and productivity .

‘‘ The Sweden example is certainly something to watch to see how it pans out over the next decade; we really need to lift our productivity and I’m sure this will be one of many ideas into the future on the best way to achieve this,’’ she said. ‘‘ I’m supportive of coming up with flexible hours that suit people’s lifestyle. ‘‘ It’s good to review these models as they come up.’’

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