THE Scottish Government will bring in a four-day working week for some public sector workers – with trials beginning this year.

Whilst not mentioned in his 30-minute address to the Scottish Parliament on Monday, the pledge is in Humza Yousaf’s Programme for Government (PFG).

The four-day working week is expected to be trialled for 12 months in the public sector, with an eye on a wider roll-out if it’s judged to be a success.

In the coming year, under public service reform, Yousaf’s PFG states: “Commence the Four Day Working Week public sector pilot by the end of this calendar year, to assess the wellbeing, environmental, and productivity benefits the Four Day Working Week could bring”.

A four-day working week does not necessarily mean a person will only work four days, according to the 4 Day Week Campaign.

Instead, 32 hours of work could be spread over more days in order to help employees achieve a healthier work-life balance.

READ MORE: Humza Yousaf unveils Programme for Government in Holyrood

The Scottish Greens said a shift to this model could “revolutionise the way we live and work”.

The Scottish Greens Party and Parliamentary staff have already adopted a four-day working week with positive results, the party said.

They added: “Better work-life balance, less stress and being better able to deal with stressful situations, and more control over their lives are just some of the benefits they’ve reported."

The party’s economy spokesperson, Maggie Chapman MSP (below), welcomed the announcement.

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Chapman said: “If we want to build a fairer and greener economy with good jobs, sustainable work, fair wages and economic security then we need to be prepared to make big changes and think big.

“The normalisation of a four-day working week without a loss of pay can help to create a better society where people are working to live and not living to work. 

“The Scottish Government has an important role to play in leading by example, and I am pleased that these trials are about to begin. For some households and industries, it wouldn’t necessarily be such a big transition, with lots of workers already working four days a week or less.

“However, for others it would obviously be a big change, which is why these trials and the lessons we get from them will be so important.

“The Scottish Greens and our MSPs have introduced a four-day week in our offices and have learnt a lot from doing so. We want to see similar changes in other areas as we build an economy that works for people and planet.”

In 2022, a six-month pilot scheme saw 61 British companies employing 2900 people end with 56 of them pledging to continue the set-up in some form.

Scottish Government advisers reportedly hope that a successful trial of the scheme in parts of the Scottish public sector could act as a catalyst for wider change in the private sector as well.