City of Keller to test out 4-day work week

KELLER, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The City of Keller announced that beginning May 28, the city would be testing out a compressed work schedule for some employees.

The new hours, which will apply to the Keller Town Hall, the Municipal Service, and the records department of the Keller Police Department, will open earlier and close later – 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. – Monday through Thursday and close on Fridays.

The city hopes that the new hours will extend service opportunities for residents and improve work/life balance for staff. Studies and anecdotal data suggest that moving to four-day work weeks can have beneficial effects for both workers and employers.

“[The] council is committed to Keller remaining Texas’s Most Family-Friendly City, and one of our strategic goals is to ‘Put People First’ — which includes creating a workplace culture at Town Hall that not only retains dedicated city employees, but also sets Keller apart in candidate recruitment,” Mayor Armin Mizani said. 

“Unlike some cities throughout the nation that are responding to industry challenges with unsustainable salary increases that burden taxpayers, Keller’s pilot program is financially responsible, sustainable, and customer-service driven.”  

Keller Human Resources Director Marcia Reyna told the council that although compressed and flexible schedules are more common in private industries, they have worked well in the public sector for years. In Keller, most employees, including those in public safety, IT, and managing community facilities, are already on compressed schedules.

City Manager Mark Hafner hopes that in addition to aiding recruitment and retention, the change will also improve efficiency in areas like public works and park maintenance. Fewer, longer shifts could provide more time to accomplish work between set-up and tear down, and smaller benefits like utility and fuel savings are an added bonus. 

“We’re competing for employees just like everyone else against both the public and private sector, and as an organization, we need to continue to adapt to the needs of the modern workforce,” Hafner said. 

“In the months ahead, we’ll be collecting customer feedback, monitoring recruitment, retention and staff productivity, and surveying employees to determine whether this will be successful long term.”  

The trial is expected to run for about four months. The City Council will receive an update in early October and decide whether or not to continue.

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