In Iceland, 86pc of the country’s workforce either work a four-day week or have a right to do so
The government should move ahead with a large-scale pilot project of a four-day working week following the overwhelming success of a limited trial, according to Social Democrats Enterprise Spokesperson Catherine Murphy.
“All 12 companies that took part in Ireland’s first-ever trial of a four-day working week are now planning to continue that work model into the future.
“The project led to increased productivity for the companies and significantly improved benefits for staff, including reduced stress, improved family time and better sleep.
“It is now time for the government to build on the success of this trial and roll out a much broader pilot project to examine the feasibility of a move to a four-day working week in this country.
“Iceland conducted a study of a four-day working week between 2015 and 2019 and found it was so successful that 86pc of the country’s workforce now either work a four-day week or have a right to do so.
“Earlier this year, the Scottish government allocated £10 million for a study into a four-day week involving a cross-section of Scottish businesses.
“It is now nearly 100 years since workers moved from a six-day week to a four-day week. Technology and work practises have utterly changed in the intervening period – not least since covid dramatically sped-up the roll out of remote working.
“A four-day week is a win-win for both workers and businesses. The government should now build on the success of this initial trial and develop its own pilot project into a four-day working week.”
30 November, 2022