Press Release: Wednesday, 6th October 2021
17 companies signed up to Four Day Week pilot programme to date
– Four Day Week Ireland presenting to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Enterprise, Trade and Employment –
17 companies have signed up to Four Day Week Ireland’s pilot programme, with more businesses encouraged to join ahead of the start of the programme in 2022. That’s according to Four Day Week Ireland, who are today presenting to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Enterprise, Trade and Employment on the pilot programme.
The companies signed up to date range from companies offering recruitment services to bioceuticals manufacturers and are located throughout Ireland.
The pilot programme was launched earlier this year by Four Day Week Ireland with the aim of trialling the effectiveness of a four-day week for Irish businesses. The pilot is part of an international collaboration with 4 Day Week Global, and will run on a coordinated, parallel basis in a number of countries including Ireland, the United States, the United Kingdom and New Zealand.
Under the pilot programme, employers will introduce a four-day week for their employees over a six-month period starting in February 2022. The pilot includes business supports to help organisations explore flexible working smoothly and successfully. The business supports include a training programme developed by companies who have already successfully implemented a four-day week; coaching, mentoring and advice from four-day week business leaders, networking and collaboration with other participant companies in Ireland and internationally and access to world-class academic research and expert analysis.
Pilot programme still open for registrations
Commenting on this milestone of the pilot programme, Kevin Callinan, General Secretary of Fórsa, who are leading the Four Day Week Ireland campaign, said: “In June of this year, the Four Day Week Ireland campaign launched the first ever four-day week pilot programme in Ireland, which will enable Irish employers to participate in a coordinated six-month trial of the four-day working week alongside similar pilot schemes in other countries, including the U.S., Canada and New Zealand. We are delighted to see 17 companies in Ireland commit to participating in our Four Day Week pilot programme to date. Since we launched the programme, we have had a huge amount of interest from Irish companies who are looking to be part of this positive force for change.
“The Four Day Week Ireland pilot programme seeks to understand better the implications of reduced working time for productivity, human wellbeing and environmental sustainability in an Irish context. It has the potential to be a triple-dividend policy, which can simultaneously improve human, economic and ecological wellbeing.
“Since the outbreak of Covid-19, our working practices have shifted dramatically, and for many, flexible working is here to stay. We know from our research that a four day week has no impact on productivity, so there is no reason not to trial it. We are looking forward to supporting the employers already signed up on their journey to a Four Day Week, and we are encouraging those who are considering participating in the trial to get in touch with us. Ireland can be a global leader in delivering reduced hour working, and developing a culture of world-renowned work-life balance for our people alongside a high-productivity business environment.
“Together, and with the support of Four Day Week Ireland, employers and employees have the opportunity to create a way of working that benefits the individual, and society as a whole.”
Input from participating companies
Two companies participating in the trial in 2022 are Soothing Solutions, a bioceuticals manufacturing company specialising in products for young children based in Louth, and Yala, a Dublin-based recruitment services company who provide their services on a monthly subscription basis.
Speaking about their upcoming involvement, Sinéad Crowther, CEO of Soothing Solutions, said: “Soothing Solutions is a young, growing business, so now is the perfect opportunity to try to build a four-day working week into how we run the business. A four-day working week will benefit staff by giving them more time to spend with their families or focusing on their passions, which we strongly believe will in turn result in greater productivity.”
Echoing Ms Crowther was Barry Prost, Managing Partner of Yala, a recruitment services business, who said: “Our main motivation for engaging in the four-day week pilot is to be able to attract and retain high quality staff to the team. Offering a four-day week will be central to our own recruitment strategy. The success of our business is dependent on the calibre of our staff, and we believe the four day week will give us an edge when it comes to attracting talent. We’re looking forward to beginning our four-day week journey in 2022 and watching our business grow as a result.”
Contact: Ciarán Garrett / Emily Brennan, Alice PR & Events, Tel: 087-7158912 / 086-1658629, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to Editors:
The following are available for media interview:
- Kevin Callinan, General Secretary of Fórsa;
- Joe O’Connor, Global Pilot Program Manager for 4 Day Week Global; and
- Sinead Crowther and Barry Prost.
About the Four Day Week campaign
The Four Day Week Ireland campaign includes Fórsa Trade Union, the National Women’s Council, Friends of the Earth Ireland, as well as a number of Irish businesses including ICE Group, 3D Issue, JMK Solicitors and SCL Sales Ltd., academics and global advocates.