This is a monumental shift for the municipality as an early adopter for an undertaking of this magnitude
Following Monday evening’s unanimous vote of approval from Common Council on the City Manager’s policy recommendation, the City will implement a four-day compressed work week for most municipal employees effective October 17, 2022.
“As a major employer, we are continually exploring ways to improve the workplace for employees and attract talent, while continuing to serve the community at a high standard,” says City Manager John Collin. “Under our model of a four-day work week, all employees who can change will be working at least the same number of hours they do now but on a compressed Monday through Thursday schedule.”
During his presentation to Council, the City Manager spoke to the many benefits of a four-day work week for employees and the employer and the benefit of extending morning and evening Customer Service Centre and One Stop Development Shop hours for the community, Monday through Thursday. He added that while the shift will see most municipal offices closed Friday through Sunday, operations such as key services in public works, the City Market, recreation facilities, transit, parking enforcement, Saint John Water and public safety services will continue to serve the community reliably and without interruption throughout the week.
“More and more organizations are focusing on innovative approaches to remain competitive and meet the evolving needs of employees and customers, and our research shows that they are seeing impressive results by taking the leap,” said Collin. “This is especially the case post-pandemic and the City of Saint John is no exception. If we can make progressive, evidence-based enhancements that are a win-win for everyone, with little to no added cost to the taxpayer or inconvenience to the customer, then we should take the opportunity.”
The transition will be piloted for one year, during which time the municipality will monitor and evaluate its success and decide whether the model will continue.
The overarching goals of a compressed work week for the City are to:
- maintain productivity and service provision to the community;
- provide extended morning and evening customer service hours Monday through Thursday;
- offer greater flexibility in balancing work and life commitments for employees; and
- support the organization in attracting and retaining employees.
“Council is looking forward to the many potential benefits this change could bring to the City and wishes to recognize the innovative approaches recommended by staff,” said Deputy Mayor John MacKenzie.
Service to the community
Beginning Monday, October 17, the City will offer extended morning and evening hours through the Customer Service Centre, One Stop Development Shop and Community Services, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Online payments and other online services will remain available seven days a week by visiting www.saintjohn.ca.
Municipal offices will be closed Friday to Sunday.
Public safety, key services in public works, Saint John Water, the City Market, recreation facilities, Saint John Transit and parking enforcement will continue to operate throughout the week, with enhancements being made in a few areas, including transit and solid waste collection. See www.shapeyourcitysaintjohn.ca for information on Transforming Transit and Waste Wise Saint John.
Limited after-hours customer service will remain available to address emergencies only. However, general inquiries and other non-emergency services will only be addressed by the Customer Service Centre during Monday to Thursday business hours.
Common Council and Committee meetings will continue to be held as scheduled and advertised on www.saintjohn.ca.
Here to help – For inquiries related to municipal services, contact the City of Saint John Customer Service Centre at (506) 658-4455, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit us in person on the Ground Floor of City Hall, 15 Market Square, Monday to Friday (excluding holidays), 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.