Recruitment for a new four-day working week pilot programme has been launched today to coincide with International Workers’ Day.
Companies and organisations of all sizes from every sector are encouraged to join the trial which will be based on the ‘100-80-100 model’ where workers get 100% of their pay, for 80% of the time, in exchange for a commitment to delivering 100% of the output.
The programme is being launched by the Four Day Week Ireland campaign in conjunction with 4 Day Week Global, an international not-for-profit organisation and is backed by the Fórsa trade union.
Participants will undertake a training programme to re-evaluate how they work before embarking on the six-month trial.
Organisations’ experiences will be tracked by international experts in University College Dublin, Boston College and Cambridge University.
This will be the second pilot of its kind in Ireland.
Last year, 12 Irish companies completed the programme with none returning to five days post-trial.
In general, management of the companies were said to have been very pleased with the outcome of the trial in terms of productivity and overall experience.
On a scale of 1-10, from very negative to very positive, the companies’ average rating for the trial was 9.2.
The results show 100% of the employees involved in the trial said they would prefer a reduced work schedule.
Results from the UK pilot with over 60 companies and almost 3,500 workers found an increase in worker wellbeing, with 71% of participants feeling less burned out and 39% less stressed while on a four-day week.
“As May Day originated from the struggle for the eight-hour workday over 150 years ago, it’s appropriate we mark the occasion by taking this important step towards a shorter workweek,” said Chair of the Four Day Week Ireland campaign, Kevin Donoghue.
“The advancements in technology witnessed in recent decades mean we can achieve the same level of output in a shorter timeframe, so we must ensure the benefits of this fourth industrial revolution are shared with workers.
“A four-day week is more than possible and long overdue,” Mr Donoghue said.
CEO of 4 Day Week Global, Dr Dale Whelehan said the group was delighted to be launching a second Irish trial after a successful first round last year.
“From Australia to Brazil, there’s an unflagging momentum behind the international four-day week movement and it’s heartening to see Ireland be such a leader on this front,” Dr Whelehan said.