STAFF at a UK. business are to see their working days cut from eight hours to six – with no loss of pay.

Bright Horizon Cloud Accountants is emulating the example of some Swedish employers in cutting the working week.

HeraldScotland:

The idea has been gaining popularity in Scandinavia as a way of improving productivity and increasing staff wellbeing.

The accountancy company already offers flexible working but says cutting the day could help motivate staff.

Company director Emily Hyland, who founded the business, said: “We are a modern breed of accountants and as such our business practices should follow suit.

“We are hoping that this new policy will mean that we can recruit top people, reduce sick days, improve staff morale and productivity. However admittedly, we are taking a bit of a gamble."

HeraldScotland:

The average number of hours worked per week in the UK stands at 43.6, compared with just 30 under the new arrangement at Bright Horizon.

The U.K. based company, which already has a “no suit and tie” policy, uses cloud technology to work with clients anywhere in the country.

It decided to try shorter working hours after reading reports that the idea improved morale and profits in Sweden.

It is recruiting for several staff and all roles will include a 30-hour week and flexible working.

Bright Horizon, based at Airfield Road, was set up last year by Emily Hyland to offer a “modern accounting solution to businesses”.

Sweden is said to be moving towards a standard six-hour working day.

HeraldScotland:

Toyota service centres in Gothenburg are said to have reported improvements in staff retention and recruitment, as well as a rise in profits. A retirement home in the same city has introduced a six-hour working day for nurses in an experiment that will run to the end of the year.

Other employers across Sweden, including hospital departments, are trying the same change.

Long working hours have been linked with increased risk of strokes and heart diseas