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Clackamas County Alternate Workweek Pilot Project Evaluation
Clackamas County Alternate Workweek Pilot Project Evaluation

Introduction

In November 2008, Clackamas County, Oregon began a one-year pilot program: switching employees to an alternate four-day work week, with 10-hour workdays (typically 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday). About 828 of Clackamas County's 1,800 employees were affected by the program, which does not extend to emergency service providers.

This report summarizes the evaluation of Clackamas County’s alternate work week pilot project based on the data collected between November 2008 and July 2009. 

Research Team 

  • Masami Nishishiba, Ph.D. and Associate Director (Lead Researcher)
  • Jana Bitton, Research Assistant
  • Dennis Kurtz, Research Assistant
  • Charlene Zil, Research Assistant

Key Findings

  1. Customer service and citizen reaction
    • The level of customer service has stayed the same.
    • The majority of the citizens seem satisfied with the alternate work week.
  2. County operations outcomes
    • The alternate work week has saved money.
    • The alternate work week may have reduced energy usage.
    • The alternate work week has been generally positive for hiring and has had no negative impact on retention.
  3. Employee experience
    • Overall, the experience has been positive for County employees.
    • A slightly higher percentage of represented employees favor the alternate work week than non-represented employees.
    • Overall, County employees consider the alternate work week good for work/life balance.
    • Alternate work week employees have experienced health impacts.
    • Child and elder care has been difficult for employees to arrange.

Conclusion

Overall, the alternate work week schedule has gained general support from the customers and citizens of the County. Furthermore, the alternate work week has achieved cost savings and contributed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. A majority of employees who worked the alternate work week also favored the new schedule.