©2019 by Copenhagen Design Merchants Inc.

  • Ole Bergstein

Danish design company UMAGE implements a 4-day work week

Merchants partner UMAGE is a Danish design company, whose name means ‘making an effort’. UMAGE is not only making an effort when it comes to their furniture and lamp designs, they also emphasize the well-being of their employees to an extent where they’ve now implemented a 4-day work week, to create a better work-life balance for their employees.

Danes are some of the happiest people in the world and as a nation, they are proud of this fact. Denmark is well-known for the concept of ‘hygge’, which is all about spending time with loved ones. So even if work is a big part of their identity, Danes find it important to have time for living too.


All UMAGE employees will now have more time with family and friends, enhancing personal goals and time to recharge their batteries. UMAGE calls this new business model ‘4-3’, to emphasize the profit from four days of effective work + a weekend of three long days incl. every Friday off.


“We are striving to find the golden ratio; a work-life balance that enables our employees to succeed and get everything they dream of in life. Time for life at home together with their great ambitions at work.” – Jacob Nannestad Hansen, CEO at UMAGE

At UMAGE, the owners Søren Ravn Christensen and Jacob Nannestad Hansen believe that more leisure time will contribute to happier employees, higher efficiency and greater creativity in the workplace. Happiness and creativity are key factors when it comes to creating beautiful designs.

Consequently, UMAGE has collaborated with external consultants for the past six months, working intensively with the organisational culture and work processes to be able to launch the 4-day work week this September. The ambition is to have the happiest employees and become the best workplace within the design industry of Denmark.


"I have often wondered why almost everyone works fulltime while having small children at home. It makes no sense to me, so the introduction of a 4-day work week at UMAGE was a positive surprise. I am very proud of being part of such a visionary company daring to challenge the traditional mindset on how work week should be." - UMAGE’s designer Anders Klem - delighted with the initiative

The Copenhagen Design Merchants applauses this initiative...