Following the decrease in travel demand due to COVID-19, Japanese low-cost carrier (LCC) Skymark Airlines has introduced a four-day workweek for its office employees beginning next spring.
Instead of following the footsteps of its counterparts around the world, in cutting down staff, the Tokyo-based airline is choosing to keep its workers employed and is avoiding furloughs by reducing work hours for its office workers.
It will be recorded that Skymark is the first among Japanese airlines to decide on such a measure for employees at its headquarters or branch offices.
The Japanese LCC is following the steps of major Japanese companies like Mizuho Financial Group and Toshiba in introducing a four-day workweek.
According to a source with knowledge of the airline’s proposed work plan, the airline’s business operations will be adjusted as necessary to ensure that it does not affect the airline’s operations.
Before COVID-19, Skymark was already introducing a more progressive workplace having a shorter work week plan in place for its employees with family obligations, such as taking care of children or parents.
According to The Japan Times, in addition to the flexible four-day workweek plan, Skymark is also looking to change its pay structure, creating one that is more equitable. Carriers like Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways (ANA) have also followed suit creating flexible work plans that allow their flight attendants to reduce working hours.
Skymark Airlines was founded in 1996 as an independent domestic airline and today is the largest independent airline in Japan.
Skymark is also the only domestic carrier competing with ANA and Japan Airlines at Haneda Airport. The Japanese LCC operates a fleet of 29 Boeing 737-800 jets flying to major cities and vacation destinations across Japan.