City of Saint John prepping to implement a four-day work week with extended customer service hours

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The city will be introducing a four-day compressed work week for most municipal employees starting on October 17, 2022.

Huddle Today/Website

This decision was unanimously voted upon from the Common Council on the evening of September 26, 2022, after a presentation from the City Manager, John Collin. Collin spoke to the council, outlining the many benefits that a four-day compressed work week would have on both employees and the community at large.

The community will have access to the Customer Service Centre and One Stop Development Shop morning to evening, running from Monday to Thursday, allowing more opportunities to seek their services at various times to accommodate the public.

An important note that Collin made in his presentation is that although most municipal offices will be closed Friday through Sunday, other key operations will continue to run.

The City Market, recreation facilities, city transit, parking enforcement, Saint John Water and Public Safety Services are the operations that will reliably serve throughout the week as normal. 

Saint John City Market/Website

In his proposal Collin expressed that a compressed work week is about making “…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,” and that the council should vote to take the opportunity to run the pilot project. 

The transition for the four-day compressed work week will be in a pilot stage for one year and will be monitored and evaluated to later decide on its continuation based on whether or not its goals are met with satisfactory results.

The goals for the pilot project include 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. 

Deputy Mayor John Mackenzie spoke on behalf of the decision and states: “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.” 

What to know about the changes

On October 17, 2022, the city will begin to extend morning and evening hours through the Customer Service Centre, One Stop Development Shop, and Community Services, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 to 6:00. Online payments and other virtual services will remain available to all seven days a week. See www.saintjohn.ca for more information.

After-hours customer service will continue to be available for emergencies only. 

Discover Saint John/Website

Operations for public safety, key services in public works, Saint John Water, the City Market, recreational facilities, Saint John Transit, and parking enforcement will continue throughout the week with improvements in a few areas such as transit and solid waste collection. For more information on the enhancements being made to transit and solid waste collection, visit www.shapeyourcitysaintjohn.ca