First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has revealed plans to include a £10 million pledge to fund pilots for Scottish companies in order to trial four day working weeks if the SNP wins a majority at the Holyrood elections in May.
Big changes could be coming to Scotland
She explains in her manifesto how Scotland must now adapt to new working conditions as a result of what was lived during the pandemic in 2020. She says:
We want to do more to support people achieve a healthy work-life balance. We also want to keep the total number of people in employment high. As part of this, we will establish a £10 million fund to allow companies to pilot and explore the benefits of a four day working week.
We will use the learning from this to consider a more general shift to a four day working week as and when Scotland gains full control of employment rights. We will also identify additional employment opportunities and assess the economic impact of moving to a four day week.
But that's not all that's in store for Scots should the SNP win majority. Sturgeon also promised free dental care for all as billions would be invested into the NHS and infrastructure in the nation.
Finally, an independence referendum was also discussed in her manifesto which she adamantly supports as she believes that Scotland's potential to thrive independently from the United Kingdom is infinite:
I look around Europe and I see independent countries, of similar size to us, that are among the wealthiest, fairest and happiest in the world. If Denmark and Norway and Ireland can do it, then with all our resources and talent, why not Scotland? I believe passionately that with the powers of independence we can do so much more for Scotland.
Other countries that are considering the shift
In Europe, Spain has voiced a desire to test-drive a four day working week in the coming months to see how it could positively impact its workers. Similarly, many Japanese companies have already made the jump from five to four working day per week and studies have shown a favourable boost in productivity.
New Zealand's Jacinda Ardern has also expressed wanting to prioritize its worker's mental health by creating a more significant balance between work and personal life.