10-hour shifts are a great way to organise your operation. They are half way between 8 and 12 hours, so if the work is partially fatiguing and you feel 12 hours would be too long, but 8 hours are too tiring because of commuting and lack of days off, you may consider 10 hours. The important part is of course balancing the start times with the finish times of all of the shifts.
Here is an example of a 10-hour shift pattern, holidays included, where there are five shifts; M (Morning Shift), E (Early Shift), D (Day Shift), L (Late Shift) and N (Night Shift). The shift pattern has been set up for one year. The Summer holiday has been extended so that they have a 19 day break. The holidays have been highlighted with an orange line. They are working no more than five consecutive shifts and have breaks of at least two days between consecutive shifts. Training Shifts (T) have also been included.
Can you imagine working on this shift schedule? The shifts are all working in nice easy blocks. Lots of good quality time off. Nice long holidays just when you want them.
With 10-hour shifts you can limit the shift rota to five consecutive shifts and still maintain adequate breaks between consecutive shifts. If you go for a holidays included shift pattern then you would expect to have a 12 day break every 10 weeks. During the Summer this can be extended to a, 19 day break, that’s one 19 day break and three 12 day breaks every year (55 days off).
With 10 hour shifts you would have to work more weekends than on 12 hour shifts but less than on 8 hours. In a 24/7 operation you would expect to be working between 50% and 60% of weekends. However since on 8-hour shifts you would be working approximately 75% of weekends that’s about 8 extra weekends off per year.
One of the main reasons for using 8-hours shifts is that mangers get to observe two shifts per day (Early and Late shift). On 12-hours however, they would only observe the Day shift. On 10 hour shifts, they could observe four of the five shifts. Thus providing better visibility and control over the operation.
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