The Chinese multinational company Byte Dance Limited,  which owns TikTok, has directed its employees in the country to come to office only five days a week, from Monday to Friday, and finish their day by 7pm, in what is being seen as an effort to protect them from what is called the ‘996’ work culture in China.

Bloomberg reported citing an internal document, which, according to the news agency, was issued on Monday.According to the revised work policy, employees should begin their nine-hour shift at 10am on a work day, and will need permission, at least one day in advance, to work overtime.

 The new policy also mandates that no employee will work for more than three hours beyond regular work hours on a weekday. On weekends, they can work for maximum eight hours, if they choose to do so.

Also, extra compensation will be given for the over time. This will be up to three times the normal monthly salary of the said staff member.

This is not for the first time when the Beijing-headquartered ByteDance has attempted to improve work conditions for its employees. Earlier this year, it cancelled an alternating system under which its workers could take only one off per week every second week.

China’s ‘996’ work culture, known as such because workers often labour from 9am to 9pm six days a week, has come under scrutiny this year due to deaths associated with overwork, as well as growing number of complaints against it on social media. However, billionaires such as Alibaba’s Jack Ma and Richard Liu of JD.com have frequently endorsed the 996 system.

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