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Thread: Working 4 10 hour days

  1. #1
    Cyburbian MD Planner's avatar
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    Working 4 10 hour days

    We are floating the idea of going to a 10 hour workday so everyone gets an extra day off every week. The day off would rotate. The issue I'm having is with the multiple night meetings that we have and how to deal with that. We've got a department of 14 or so professsionals. Does anyone else do this and how does it work? If so, would you be willing to share your documents that outlines how you operate such an endeavor?
    He's a planner, he's a dreamer, he's a sordid little schemer,
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  2. #2
    Cyburbian MacheteJames's avatar
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    I think a mandatory 10 hour workday is a terrible idea for people who need to pick up kids from daycare or have other early morning or evening commitments. However, a "summer hours" option that gives staff the option to work a longer day and have an additional day off a week could be great.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian
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    I don't think it should be mandatory at all. I would cry if I had to work 10 hour days every day, even if it meant getting an extra day off once a week. We have one person in our office that does 9 hour days and every other Monday off. But he's not someone that typically needs to be available to customers during the day.

    The only benefit I could see to making it mandatory would be if they were going to extend the hours the department was open to better accommodate citizens. Barring that, there's no reason to require it. See who's interested in and then work out schedules from there.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Plus dvdneal's avatar
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    4-10s killed me. Even with not having to pick up kids or anything. It was a long day. Nothing got done by the end of the day because we were all burnt out and it took us longer to warm up in the morning. When I got home I crammed down dinner, said hi to the kids, sent them to bed, and it was about bedtime for me. My favorite schedule is the 9-80 schedule. You work only an extra 1/2 hour Mon-Thur. Regular 8 hour shift on Friday. Same thing next week, but you get Friday off. I'm also a big proponent of flex schedule options. If someone wants to work 4-10s and it works for the city/company let them. My assistant and I both work 40 hours weeks, but we shift who comes in early so one of us is always leaving early and the other is covering the office until 5.

    If you're going to get stuck doing it, might I suggest that meeting day, say Tuesday, is never a day off. It would just bypass every Tuesday like it doesn't even exist.
    I don't pretend to understand Brannigan's Law. I merely enforce it.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian MD Planner's avatar
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    Thanks all. At this point it has never been suggested that it would be mandatory but an option. Another one of the problems is that besides Friday EVERYDAY can potentially be meeting days (nights).

    DVD I don't understand how your math works out. If you work an extra half hour for 8 days of a 10 day pay period that only equals 4 hours so how do you then get a whole day off?
    He's a planner, he's a dreamer, he's a sordid little schemer,
    Seems to think that money grows on trees . . .

  6. #6
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I can tell you my 4-10 story... A former employer had flex scheduling that allowed me to do 4-10s. What happened in reality is that I still ended-up coming in every Friday due to the nature of the job and a disrespectful boss that didn't see it as a big deal to make those of us working flex schedules come in. I eventually quit and came to my current employer.

    I don't think 4-10s work well in high public content departments like planning & building. We usually don't have enough staff to really cover the flex day sufficiently without really screwing productivity.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Plus dvdneal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by MD Planner View post
    Thanks all. At this point it has never been suggested that it would be mandatory but an option. Another one of the problems is that besides Friday EVERYDAY can potentially be meeting days (nights).

    DVD I don't understand how your math works out. If you work an extra half hour for 8 days of a 10 day pay period that only equals 4 hours so how do you then get a whole day off?
    My bad, it's 8 9 hour days and 1 8 hour day over 2 weeks = 1 day off every 2 weeks.

    I've also heard some people do it as 8 9 hour days plus 2 4 hour days over 2 weeks. No days off.
    I don't pretend to understand Brannigan's Law. I merely enforce it.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian MD Planner's avatar
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    This is why I've liked Cyburbia since about 1997 or so. Aside from the jokes and silliness I can ask a real question and get honest, "been there, done that" opinions from other planners quickly. Thanks!
    He's a planner, he's a dreamer, he's a sordid little schemer,
    Seems to think that money grows on trees . . .

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dvdneal View post
    My bad, it's 8 9 hour days and 1 8 hour day over 2 weeks = 1 day off every 2 weeks.

    I've also heard some people do it as 8 9 hour days plus 2 4 hour days over 2 weeks. No days off.
    I worked for a firm that did 8.5-hour days Monday - Thursday so you could work a six-hour day on Friday - helped my golf game immensely.

    I also did the four 10-hour days over a couple of summers at a state agency. Everyone else has pretty much nailed it - don't make it mandatory, "summer-hours" only is best, ensuring full coverage by staff is key.
    I found you a new motto from a sign hanging on their wall…"Drink coffee: do stupid things faster and with more energy"

  10. #10
    Cyburbian
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    I used to have a 4-10 schedule and it was wonderful because I had a long commute (20 miles, in the same direction as rush hour). Most people in my department could have a choice of 4-10 or 9-80, and except for one person who took every Wednesday off, everyone else had either Monday or Friday as their flex day. It was certainly dicey to schedule meetings on Mondays and Fridays, but generally it wasn't hard to work around, as long as managers were flexible to allow people to trade their flex day for a different day if something important was scheduled on their flex day.

    I think flex schedules are a huge morale booster, and I know it's a deal-breaker for many people when considering a job offer.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    We have the option of working a 4-10 schedule. I used to do be on that schedule and loved it. I am considering going back to it for the summer.

    For those of us with night meetings that might add up extra hours, we just keep track of the total hours and try to get as close to 10 hours (or 8 hours if that's your schedule) a day. We do not rotate our days off - if you are on the 4-10 schedule you always have the same day off each week. I think not rotating the day off would make scheduling attendance at night meetings easier since board and commission meetings always seem to stick to the same days as well. HR doesn't really care how many hours we work in a day as long as we get 80 hours in a pay period. It probably helps out that besides 2 or 3 people in the office we don't really have a front counter that has to be manned during specific hours and even if we did, we have about 80 people on staff in the department so most work groups have plenty of coverage if they should need it. Also, while it's not a requirement, everybody who decides to work the 4-10 schedule picks either Monday or Friday off and there are no night meetings on Fridays and very few on Mondays. In the end, the individual supervisors have the final say on whether or not an employee can elect to go on the 4-10 schedule.

    I just looked in our official rules and this is basically all the HR documents say about it:

    4/40 PILOT PROGRAM
    GUIDELINES FOR NOTIFICATION OF EMPLOYEE
    PARTICIPATION AND CHANGES TO DAYS OFF
    • Employees changing participation must begin at the beginning of a pay period
    • All notifications to Payroll regarding changes to the 4/40 program must be received in Payroll by 5:00 P.M. Thursday prior to pay ending Friday.
    • Notifications of additions to and deletions from the 4/40 program must be signed by an authorized signer. This is the same as those authorized for Timekeeper Summary Reports.
    • Notification of days off for employees already participating in the 4/40 program are to be submitted on the Changes to Days Off form. This information is used only to pre-format the employee's timesheet. Any changes to an employee's schedule must be approved by the employee's supervisor.

    Then we have a separate form we fill out where we state which day off we want each week.
    "Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost." - 1980 Republican presidential candidate Ronald Reagan

  12. #12
    Quote Originally posted by Suburb Repairman View post
    I can tell you my 4-10 story... A former employer had flex scheduling that allowed me to do 4-10s. What happened in reality is that I still ended-up coming in every Friday due to the nature of the job and a disrespectful boss that didn't see it as a big deal to make those of us working flex schedules come in. I eventually quit and came to my current employer.

    I don't think 4-10s work well in high public content departments like planning & building. We usually don't have enough staff to really cover the flex day sufficiently without really screwing productivity.
    We do a modified flex schedule. You have to have your required number of hours at the end of the week. We allow some flexing because of doctor appointments, kids, family emergencies etc. The 4-10 doesn't work well in the public sector because we need to be available to the public.
    When did I go from Luke Skywalker to Obi-Wan Kenobi?

  13. #13
    Cyburbian RandomPlanner's avatar
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    We have an unwritten flexing rule and I appreciate it. Get your work done, get in your hours, and leave if you need to leave. I think I'd like the 4-10 hours but I've never had the option. What I'd really like is to be able to work from home one day a week. I feel like I could be just as motivated on my couch with my laptop as I am at my desk at work, maybe more even!
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  14. #14
    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    The planning shop I interned at before grad school tried this out along with the building department for a summer to offer extended hours to the public. You definitely need sufficient staff.

    The office was open 8-6, half worked 8-5 and half worked 9-6. All staff received either a Monday or Friday off every other week. It helped that meetings were only T, W, or Th.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    My previous employer switched to a 4-10. Govt offices (except for public safety) were open 7-6 Monday-Thursday. I still worked most Friday's but it was catching up or using my work computer for my second job ( love having two monitors.)

    The pros was having Fridays off to take care of hair cuts, oil changes and running errands and it lets you build your vacation days since I never took a random day off to get personal things done.

    The cons was I was never home...I would sometimes go 4 days without seeing my daughter awake.

    I tend to work 50+ hours so I did not mind the long days. I switched back to an 8-5 at my current job and my days feel shorter, my weekend feels non existent but my weeks feel longer.
    "You merely adopted the dark. I was born in it,..." -Bane

  16. #16
    Cyburbian
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    This is only tangentially related, but I thought some of you would find it interesting. Apparently the state of Utah tried to change all state worker's schedules to 4/10 back in 2008-2010. They found that the energy savings they thought would arise from keeping buildings closed an extra day each week did not quite materialize, and there were some problems with employee productivity and public acceptance. See the audit report here, if you're interested: http://le.utah.gov/audit/10_10arpt.pdf

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Tay-j's avatar
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    Our office is open 10 hours a day 5 days a week. Most of the office works Monday-Thursday, and I work Tuesday - Friday. Personally I like having the extra day off, working 10 hour days isn't a huge deal to me, but I also live within walking distance of the office, so I don't have to deal with a commute on top of working. The director is on salary, and is expected to be at council meetings no matter how long they go. If I have to work late due to a meeting I'm given the option of coming in late the next day, or getting paid overtime.

    Friday's are also pretty slow around here (most people believe we are closed) it's amazing what I can get done when the phone isn't ringing every 5 minutes, and no one is coming in to ask me questions at the counter, so lets keep this our little secret.

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