Unemployment is markedly higher in Spain than in other EU countries, having negative economic and social effects for individuals and for the society as a whole. Additionally, Spain employees show low productivity rates. This is in part due to the economic dependency on the tertiary sector, but also to some social aspects, namely, a different organization of the working hours and the split shift (including a long break for lunch) which complicates the reconciliation of work and family lives. The authors focus on the service sector and propose concentrating the work day to finish work earlier and to add a new shift in the evening to allow shops, banks and the important hospitality sector, among others, to remain open all day. The generalisation of a double straight shift, instead of a single split shift, should generate expected social benefits like the enhancement of productivity and the creation of jobs, i.e. unemployment reduction.
Keywords: Unemployment, split shift, work schedule, reconciling work and family