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Thursday, October 8, 2009

4-Day Week Successfully Tried in State of Utah. Why Not Try it Here?

It seems that the state of Utah in USA has successfully trialed a 4-day week for their public service. Apparently, the 4-day week has increased productivity, improved services of various state departments, saved cost and made life better for the lowly paid government employees. The Governor of Utah is making it his pledge to make the 4-day week a permanent thing in Utah.

I believe that it will be a good program for Pakatan states to implement considering Pakatan Rakyat is meant to lead the way in innovation and improvement for the people. Since it is also cost saving, it will work in Pakatan's favor.

Remember, the 5-day week routine was started by none other than the Kelantan PAS government all the way back to 1990 and it was later adopted by the Federal BN government several years later.


T.G.I.Thursday

  • Posted by: Ben Jervey
  • on August 24, 2009 at 3:40 pm

An energy- and money-saving solution that pretty much everyone can get behind: three-day weekends.

Workers of the world, unite in giving Utah a round of applause. The Beehive State has made Thursday the new Friday, and by proving the benefits of this condensed calendar, Utah has brought us all closer to the dream of a shortened workweek.

A year ago, Republican Governor Jon Hunstman announced the Working 4 Utah initiative, essentially putting 17,000 of the state’s 24,000 executive branch employees on a 10 hour a day, four day a week schedule. The goal for the cash-strapped state was energy savings. Now that a full year has passed (we checked in on the program back in April), a clearer picture of the benefits is coming into focus.

Learning from the lessons of Utah, here are five reasons the “TGIT” (Thank Goodness It’s Thursday) four-day, 40-hour workweek just might make sense:

1: Energy savings and reduction in carbon emissions

Closing state offices on Fridays has cut energy use by 13 percent in Utah. Officials hope to bring that number closer to 20 percent as the kinks are worked out (and as they figure out how to actually shut down some of the heating and cooling systems in some of the buildings). Through these energy savings alone, Utah is shrinking its carbon footprint by about 6,000 metric tons. If you add in the gasoline savings from fewer commutes, that number is doubled—to roughly the equivalent of taking 2,300 cars off the road for a year.

2: Traffic reduction and commuter health

Of course, as fewer workers commute on any given day, there’s less traffic. But the hour shift for the four-day crew also thins out the traditional rush hours, speeding up travel for everyone. Besides easing the mental burden of traffic, commuters are exposed to fewer airborne pollutants. A California EPA study found that “50 percent of a person’s daily exposure to ultra fine particles (the particles linked to cardiovascular disease and respiratory illnesses) can occur during a commute.”

3: Budget boost

There are big savings to be had in operational costs when shaving a day off the workweek. As of May, nine months into the program, Utah had saved $1.8 million. And, according to Governor Huntsman, “the cost savings will only grow if the four-day workweek is granted permanent status” because the state can renegotiate long-term leases and further refine “smarter” energy, heating, and cooling systems in buildings.

4: Happier, healthier workforce

Lori Wadsworth, a researcher at Brigham Young University, surveyed Utah workers who’ve transitioned to the 4 x 10 schedule and found that 82 percent prefer it. And, according to Wadsworth, “Utah employees actually show decreased health complaints, less stress, and fewer sick days.” And while absenteeism has dropped, productivity and quality of service have improved—customer complaints, for example, at state agencies like the DMV are down. Early evidence seems to quell the initial fears that 10-hour workdays would “burn out” employees.

5: Economic stimulus through savings

It costs money to go to work—commuting expenses like gas, tolls, or public transit fares are obvious, but plenty of workers also pay for five days of childcare every week. Collectively, Utahans are expected to save $5 million to $6 million annually on commuting alone. Thus the four-day workweek has macroeconomic benefits as well, leaving more cash in the pockets of workers.

While we’ve come to take it for granted, the the Monday-through-Friday, 8-hour workday, 40-hour workweek has only been the standard since 1938 when the Fair Labor Standards Act was passed. It made plenty of sense at the time, and improved the lives of loads of American workers who regularly endured dangerously long hours with scant free time. But, in reality, the Monday-through-Friday grind was rather arbitrary, and as Utah’s experiment has already shown, it could well be time for a rethink.

So who’s next? Some cities like El Paso, Texas, and Melbourne Beach, Florida are already launching their own T.G.I.T. programs, and a GM plant in Ohio is shifting to the four-day workweek as well. Big states with massive public payrolls like New York (which has a public workforce 10 times the size of Utah’s) and California are also paying very close attention. Said John Harrington, Utah’s state energy manager, “I can’t even name all the places that have called us.”

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes,Yes..Pakatan must seriusly consider this option..there r so many issues that afflict this country..income disparity,urban poverty,divisions based on race and religion..all these due to UBN haprak who has destroyed this country due to their extreme stupidity and greed!!

Anonymous said...

If PR want to implement, they can try by making Friday, Saturday and Sunday the off day.

Anonymous said...

Tulang,

I agree with u.

Cuma, kalau betul2 buat 4 hari, buat rotation. Janganlah pasal 4 hari, pejabat kerajaan buka cuma sampai hari khamis.

Biar tiap2 hari ada orang termasuklah ahad, tapi pekerjanya shift. I think sum multinational company pun dah buat benda ni.

What do ya think?

Tulang Besi said...

I agree. For front offices that deals with direct customers it should be rotated to enable them to open 7 days a week, 24 hrs.

But, they can still keep the 4-day routine for each employee.

Civil servants are poorly paid. So, they can consider this their perk, plus it will solve a lot of traffic jam problems also.

Tulang Besi said...

The problem with Selangor is that the SS is loaned to them from JPA. So, he is still a servant of UMNO.

He might try to sabotage this effort because it will make PR government very popular among civil servants.

Anonymous said...

Make it 1 day week then!

TB, thats Utah!! considered kampungs un the US.

That is the most silly idea!
Why? reduced productivity. less income for the people.
less income for the government.

The country will lose competitiveness against other country.

Kalau nak menangkan hati rakyat pun, biarlah idea yang bernas. Utah and Malaysia is different. Check their economic background!

Bodoh betul! Hanya orang yang bodoh dan malas akan sokong idea awak ni! Sengaja nak mundurkan negara!

Just think how difficult for other countries to deal with us when we dont work on the day they work!

Tulang Besi said...



TB, thats Utah!! considered kampungs un the US.

That is the most silly idea!
Why? reduced productivity. less income for the people.
less income for the government.

The country will lose competitiveness against other country.
.

Please read the article fully. Even cities like New York is now considering the move because of the savings it generates to the state on monthly basis.

Not to mention the increased productivity.

Anonymous said...

Well TB,
Start applying for your green card and work in laid back Utah.

And the good thing is you actually work 3 days!
Coz on thursday, you'll be in weekend mood!!
Yeah! 3 day weekend to look forward!! Good policy for couch potatoes.

Poor on those working on deadlines. longer miles stone.

Nak tiru idea pun biarlah bernas. Malaysia is a developing Nation. not a welfare state!

Are you running out of ideas? Is this the best you can think of?

Anonymous said...

TB,
It is a great formula to screw up the productivity of the country which is still in its developing stage.
param

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
TB,
It is a great formula to screw up the productivity of the country which is still in its developing stage.
param
.
What makes you think that 5-day week is more productive than 4 day week?

Is there proof?

Rajin said...

Of course this idea is likeable by lazy staff. Malaysia government agencies are already slow and not optimal, you now propose this to let them even slower and I may say lazier. No hope for Malaysia if this gonna happen. What next? 1 day week?

Anonymous said...

Sahabat Kanan,

Malaysia government agencies are already slow and not optimal, you now propose this to let them even slower and I may say lazier.

Tulang besi's proposal is much-much better than having Centerlink like in Australia or Welfare Service in the UK where unemployed people get paid and many people take advantage of this kind of system.

Orang putih byk yg kerja odd jobs saja, kerja cashier etc, bila cukup duit pegi jalan2,bila dtg sini, org panggil sir etc.

Di Barat, yang dipentingkan adalah mental and physical well being of the workers. Productivity bukan sahaja boleh kita dapat dengan "tekan" pekerja tapi dengan motivasi, professionalisme dan juga semangat suka bekerja.

yang penting adakah bagaimana pekerja boleh dioptimumkan outcome kerjanya walaupun hanya 4 hari seminggu. Anyway, benda ni masih boleh didebatkan, sebab jika mentaliti pekerja kita tidak professional, not a must. Tapi, why not tgk benda ni on many side, whether we can implemented it in Malaysia.

Suggestion is always a suggestion.

Anonymous said...

4 day week?, well hospitality workers are still on a 6 days week! and we are talking of a 4 day week in malaysia.

Anonymous said...

Well,certain MNC's follow 12hours x 4 days/week..

Anonymous said...

Mahashit the 3rd world mentally retard malayali despot frm kerala always lambasted welfare system..according to his demented logic,this will make people lazy..what a f*kin moron..his daughter,his sons, worked very hard frm bottom to top kot? devil capitalism,anti labour was and still is the hallmark of malaysia..radical changes r neccassary becos our labour laws r dead n buried,and majikan r addicted to foreign workers @ modern day slaves..

Anonymous said...

btw,i heard soemone say,our SOCSO is in big trouble..me suspect f*ked up retard 24/7 kote keraih UBN politicians kali ni rompak itu fund..

Tulang Besi said...

Anonymous said...
btw,i heard soemone say,our SOCSO is in big trouble..me suspect f*ked up retard 24/7 kote keraih UBN politicians kali ni rompak itu fund..

October 9, 2009 3:31 PM
.

Why am i not surprise? Can u share some of the details?

LA said...

all these are dodgy data...

so when you are not at work means that you would stay home and reduce carbon release?

when you don't spend money for lunch, then the economy gets better?

what kind of stupid article you've pasted in here?

Grand Marquis said...

There is nothing wrong accepting what is good, even if it comes from the opposition or "enemy". That should be the correct attitude as politic is just a tool to achieve greater means.

Unfortunately, if such attitude can be adopted by the PR politicians and supporters, I believe Malaysian politic will be in better shape.

Take a classic example. Our dear DSAI. He criticized every bit of government doing when he is in the opposition forgetting that he was part of the person help to shape what our current government is today. Least many of the PR politician whose past success was by the existence of DEB and today they try to champion the abolishment of DEB.

TB, I dare you to tell me that you have not benefited from DEB.

Anonymous said...

Typical melayu, How lazy can you get bro, sekarang nak kerja 4 hari aje!!!, Hellllooooo kaji dulu lah kayu, What is the population of Utah, what do the majority of people do, what are their occupations, this is a farming and mountainous area covered by the rockies, they are a cattle and farming community, not a industrial state! Anyway it does not matter to the American economy if the state of Utah works or dies like that of Kelantan another back-side-wards state, what is its economics of scale, if not for its enterprising KELANTAN women folks, the malay men would die of starvation, hence the only way to control the BOSS(the women who controls the purses trings of a family ) of the Kelantan family, The only thing the lazy eunachs could come up with to control their BOSS was through religion, Hence the state of affairs you people have. How to progress if you continue to be leeches, keep sucking the life blood of the host- one day the host is going to die or take a delousing shower> habislah macam tu, 4 DAYS INDEED! Bodoh bin sotong for brains. Anyway congratulations on your big win for Pas, the chinese and Indians abandoned your candidate> carry on being morons with your Hassan ALI'S in Selangor and Your pro UMNO morons for trengganau, think melayu and become the fastest growing almost there dying party in Malaysian history, Continue marginalising and dictating to the non bumis like you people are the messiahs, well you will end up with a kick in the backside as usual.

Anonymous said...

By your argument, if PR wins based on these promises, hey, BN will promise a 3 day week then and win back the government! And so on.... duh!

Anonymous said...

There are some folk here try to give credit to UMNO for the nations progress. Malaysia's growth has only come because of two things, one is oil and two a export driven growth model backed by Americans.

Its so funny to see Mahathir when he talks sometimes against America when in reality, he is nothing more then a string of puppies of the United States.

No country in the region would have survived if not for the USA. Sukarno was found to be not manageable and so Suhuarto was choosen.

Americans did not want this region to fall under communism. Hence it was that need that forced them to support countries like Malaysia.

Many people tend to forget that UMNO was formed after world war 2. It was formed to protect the rights of the Sultans and masked to show it was a Malay rights party.

Except for Mahathir, no one else has been a commoner. Hence he was the one who put the Sultans in check. Must appreciate him for that.

Today the US is where Great britan was after the war. It cureency is on the way to losing its reserve status. Its bankrupt. Do you think UMNO can create growth from thin air.

Oil resources are moving towards the point of where imports will be needed for the future. Whathever oil revenue now is shrinking and the population growing.

If UMNO manages to be in power in the next election which I doubt, then Malaysia will be finished.

Anonymous said...

There are so many good examples of public service, from countries thru'out the world, that you can adopt and propose but you choose this "4-day week"? Are you joking? or mentally retarded?

Anonymous said...

Anon October 12, 2009 8:15 AM,

really? Just look at the richest crude oil region, and compare how much Malaysia has gone far ahead. Only now they beginning to see the possibility of nation building thru Malaysian governance.

Wealth without good governance is no good.
Petronas is much more reputable than any of their oil companies. How come?

Anonymous said...

Anon October 12, 2009 5:35 PM,
'Just look at the richest crude oil region, and compare how much Malaysia has gone far ahead. Only now they beginning to see the possibility of nation building thru Malaysian governance.
Petronas is much more reputable than any of their oil companies. How come?'
Simple Because Malaysia followed SECULARISM through its preveous Pm's till Mahathir's announcement that Malaysia was an Islamic country!, well well see what happened after that, out crawled all those worms foaming at the mouth shouthing islam this and that, and body snatching that we have never heard of before has become the norm, Malaysia was moving forward, until religion was mixed into the fray by our politicians, which has pushed us backwords like those sand nigger countries from the middle east, Why do you think they kept their people uneducated, except for religion or none at all, to keep them ignorant, but than the malays love to ape others don't they, Now you have this LETS OUT-ARAB THE, ARABS, START WEARING TURBANS AND SPOUTING ARABIC, as though that makes you people sound PIOUS OR SMART, but in reality what are the malays as a race, cultural parasites who have nothing of their own except to pinch from other nations, and than claim that its their own, well folks we laugh at your naivity and dumbness, as though all these mouth spouting mumbo jumbo will lead you guys forward, nowhere near the truth watson, in fact whats happenning here is a back sliding trend of looking for free handouts and easy way out leading to mental autism.

Anonymous said...

whoever commenting here that condemning that 4 day week is idiotic or prove-that-malays-are-lazy, these people literally read this bloody blog only and lazy to do extra research on this matter. i believe the iron bone is highlighting this matter just to discuss and want to see is open about it or not.

i believe that if this 4 day week really implemented in malaysia, those who not agree will be the first to celebrate and lazier than ever!

Anonymous said...

whoever commenting here that condemning that 4 day week is idiotic or prove-that-malays-are-lazy, these people literally read this bloody blog only and lazy to do extra research on this matter. i believe the iron bone is highlighting this matter just to discuss and want to see is open about it or not.

i believe that if this 4 day week really implemented in malaysia, those who not agree will be the first to celebrate and lazier than ever!

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