4 On 4 Off – 12 Hour Shift Pattern

This shift pattern delivers a constant 24/7 staff supply and is typically deployed wherever machine production is found e.g. food production and processing industry. The standard 4 on 4 off 12 hour shift pattern is one of the most popular sequence based shift patterns for 12 hour shifts. However, in almost all cases shift changes only take place between days off.

This example demonstrates a change to the juxtaposition of shifts which enable a shift change to take place in the 4 day work sequence. Where this modification is adopted it improves workplace outcome and generates a significant staff cost benefit without incuring any additional overhead. I have not had an occasion where staff have resisted this proposed change.


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  1. […] The description ‘Night shifts is not that helpful’. Depending on the pattern, night shift working can be the difference between ‘chalk & cheese’. For example there is a big difference working 7 night shift straight thru and two days off; and 4 night shifts separated by a 24 hour break followed by four days off. You can check out an example of what we mean here. […]