More state employees with shorter work week - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

More state employees with shorter work week

Chris Hilario-Yamane Chris Hilario-Yamane

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - The State of Hawaii is more than doubling the number of employees taking part in the four-day work week pilot program.

Kinau Hale will be closed on Fridays starting October 13th. As some employees with the Department of Health start an eight-week test to see if working longer days but shorter weeks is better for us all.

Those employees are joining in a pilot program for state workers.

It's another long work day for Chris Hilario-Yamane.

"Around 4-5 in the afternoon you get a little tired," said Hilario-Yamane.

Just like over a hundred other state employees, Chris is on a 10-hour day, working four days a week. And she couldn't be happier with the change.

"It's wonderful. I love it."

The extended hours allow more of the public to drop off necessary paperwork at the end of the day. And it's one of the positives this pilot program has already seen.

"The extended hours really benefit the public whether its early morning or late afternoon," said Lt. Governor Duke Aiona.

There has also been cost saving on electricity, since the offices are closed an additional day.

Now the pilot program will more than double in size.

"267 employees of the Department of Health will transition from 8-work weeks to 10 hour work weeks," said Aiona.

The pilot program at the Human Resources Department is slated to stop at the end of the month but many employees would like to keep up the longer days and shorter work weeks.

"Once you get over build up the mental stamina its working out nice," said Marjorie Penebacker.

"Most of the people in our division really enjoy it, they have a lot of free time to do family things. We hope it continues," added Hilario-Yamane.

Because the Department of Health records office will be closed on Fridays for the next eight weeks, the State is looking to private agents to handle certain services when they are shut down, like marriage licenses.

And we should know next year, if this four-day work week experiment will turn into a permanent schedule.

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