“It’s been a little hard to get used to, but it provides us an opportunity for work-life balance that is great,” Mansfield town employee Jillene Woodmansee said.
Mansfield Town Hall employees are getting adjusted to longer work hours, but fewer days. That means employees have a three-day weekend.
“We had to be mindful of other ways that we could be competitive in a really tough labor market,” Mansfield Town Manager Ryan Aylesworth said.
The town is trying out a four-day workweek for six months. Aylesworth said there were several factors in the decision-making process including providing employees with work-life balance following the pandemic and extending business hours on Monday through Thursday for people who get out of work later.
Get Connecticut local news, weather forecasts and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC Connecticut newsletters.
“By being open a little bit late in the day, it will make it easier for them on their return commutes to get here before we close,” Aylesworth said.
There is also a push to help the environment through the pilot program.
“Basically, reducing the number of days people are commuting from five days to four we believe it would help us achieve our number of sustainability goals,” Aylesworth said. "We want to be net zero as a municipal government by 2030 and keeping employees off the road on Fridays, reducing miles driven by 20% in the course of their commute is one way of doing that."
For now, this change only applies to 40 town hall employees. There are discussions underway, if all goes well, to make the change in other municipal departments.
The town is asking for feedback from employees and residents. The survey can be found here.
So far, there are positive reviews.
“It’s great. I think all companies should go to four-day workweeks,” Denise Mozzer, of Mansfield, said. “I think people are getting burnt out in their jobs and they are not happy and having that third day off, whether it be midweek or attached to the weekend it gives strength to go back to work.”