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Samsung Implements Six-Day Work Week to Instill Sense of Urgency

Samsung is instituting a notable alteration in its labor policy, primarily targeting its executive cadre. As reported by The Korea Economic Daily, the South Korean conglomerate will now require senior officials across several divisions to adhere to a six-day work week, as opposed to the previous five-day schedule.

Reasons Behind the Change

This decision follows Samsung’s disappointing financial performance for the fiscal year 2023, as highlighted by the aforementioned media outlet. The company has explicitly communicated to its employees that the implementation of the six-day work week aims to instill a heightened sense of urgency among executives, urging them to exert maximum effort in overcoming challenges.

One key factor motivating this change could be the intense competition in broadband chip development, a sector crucial for artificial intelligence applications. Samsung’s financial report for 2023 revealed substantial losses of approximately $11 billion in its semiconductor division, a significant setback considering that chip manufacturing contributes 80% to the company’s overall profits.

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Implications on Divisions

Initially, the six-day work week will be enforced in divisions such as Samsung Display, Samsung Electro-Mechanics, and Samsung SDS, with plans to extend it to other business sectors, including financial services, in the future. It’s worth noting, however, that certain divisions like Samsung C&T and Heavy Industries had already been operating on a six-day work schedule voluntarily.

Importantly, this policy change is limited to executives and will not impact lower-level employees within Samsung.

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