Most countries consider the 40-hour work week, Monday through Friday, the traditional work week. Most people consider Saturday and Sunday as the weekend. Though a lot of service industries such as banks are not open on the weekends, other types of jobs such as retail, fast food, and many entertainment venues are open. So, is Saturday a business day?
Many people are off during the weekend and so they want to spend time with friends, go see a movie, or make a grocery trip for new supplies at home. These kinds of businesses then make Saturday and even Sunday an extra work day. If these kinds of services were not open during the weekend, then nobody would be going out and spending money. Instead, they would stay at home, cozy on the couch with a movie and their pet.
Another thing to understand is that when some businesses are open on the weekend, their hours may be changed. But, a normal business is usually 9 AM to 5 PM. For a mom-and-pop shop, they may close early so that they can enjoy the weekend themselves. Or at some places, they are open later so that they can attract more customers to their business.
Some businesses and services such as government buildings, schools, banks, and other businesses stay on the same schedule of days and holidays. This keeps it much simpler for these groups to have the same schedule in order to do business with one another.
History of Business Days
But how did the business day and the weekend all come together? Going back to the Industrial Revolution, business was booming. This was during a time of great progress and industry that built America up. However, during these times, factories operated most of the day and poorly cared for their workers. This led to many accidents and even deaths. Children as young as five or six labored as well.
Because of these horrid conditions, many people, exhausted by work, suffered injuries. This led to Robert Owen, a Welsh social reformer and industrialist, proposing the eight-hour work day. He said that paired with an eight-hour sleep and eight hours of recreational time, it provided the perfect balance for the average worker.
It was not until later that manufacturing titan Henry Ford had an idea. He noticed that his workers, who worked six days a week, burnt out on the sixth day. He created an experiment where they work for five days a week, believing that the workers will work much harder if they have two days off in a row. Because of this, people credit Ford for creating the five-day work week.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the 40-hour work week official in 1939. As time went on, these workweeks soon had a new conundrum. What do you do about people who work over 40 hours a week? The Fair Labors Standards Act then came into law, declaring that businesses must pay their employees time-and-a-half for working overtime. This helped employees not be taken advantage of by employers.
The work week was created to ensure employee burnout did not happen. However, they were also provided with two leisure days that they could spend with their family and do other things. To consider Saturday a business day is a bit of a complicated answer. For many of the federal buildings, banks, post offices, and more, no, it is not considered to be one. But it is also a business day for others in many service industries, which allows many to go out and enjoy activities. This also allows businesses to do business for an extra two days if they so choose.
So, yes, Saturday is a business day for many industries. Some remote employees also consider it a work day, as they more than likely have flexible schedules. Yet, for much of the population, Saturday is not a work day and they continue the Monday-Friday 9 AM to 5 PM grind.