If you were a government employee in Utah, you'd be used to this schedule by now. But there is a catch of course, employees have to work 10-hour days Monday through Thursday to make up for the lost time on Friday.
According to this article from The Atlantic, 82% of the employees prefer the new work schedule. The state of Utah has also found that the change is helping them a be little more green. They've saved $1.8 million in electricity and eliminated 6,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.
Scientific American said that many local governments have been looking at Utah as they consider changing their work week. This could very well catch on in local government. And maybe further to other industries?
If my office changed to a 4-day, 40-hour work week, I'd have to work nine to seven without a break for lunch. Some weeks, I eat lunch at my desk every day and I'm at the office until 6:30 every night. Another half hour every night wouldn't kill me. Then I'd have Friday off and Thursday would be the new Friday.
This is all fine and good. But I spend a lot of money on the weekend. Even when I'm making a effort to spend less, I spend more on a weekend day then I do on a week day. I shop, go to the movies, go out to dinner and more. Could I afford a 3-day weekend? Not to mention instead of my company spending money to keep the office cool in the summer or warm in the winter, I'd be spending my own money on that for an extra day.
Comments on The Atlantic article bring up a number of other concerns: Would an extra day with your kids make up for two less hours with them each night? Would this really work in most industries? Would letting employees work from home for a day be a better idea for business?
Something that seems so simple and beneficial to all involved, may not be so.