While our four-day workweek is just beginning, Utah announced over the weekend that theirs will end. Former Utah Governor and current presidential candidate John Huntsman’s Friday-free experiment comes to a close this week.
In 2008, state government agencies (schools, court systems and prisons exempt) adjusted their hours to a 4-days-a week (Monday – Thursday), 10-hour-day schedule. The “4/10” experiment was an exercise in cutting energy costs, but is cut short just after three years. A 2010 audit of the Working 4 Utah Initiative revealed the money saved didn’t reach the 3 million Huntsman’s administration had hoped.
While in-house savings didn’t pass muster, the unexpected benefits of an extra day outside of the office will surely be missed -- from the surge in Friday volunteers to the drop in greenhouse-gas emissions. The four-day week is not dead, however. Provo, Utah, will retain the schedule while interested parties in Texas, Hawaii, and Virginia consider plans of their own.