Utah's Four-Day Week Has No CU Takers
"It's an idea that's been talked about, but, remember, we're a service-oriented business, which means we have to be there five days a week to take care of our members," said a spokesman for the $443 million Deseret First FCU, whose primary sponsor includes the Mormon Church.
Still, the state's largest CU, the $4.3 billion America First FCU, while making no plans to follow the state's sweeping lead, already offers a four-day, 10-hour option to some employees, including those working in grocery branches with extended hours.
America First and the $2.4 billion Mountain America FCU have said they have been pursuing ways to help employees save on gas and commuting expenses.
"We're in the process of reviewing responses we got from an on-line survey we took recently asking employees how gas prices were affecting them," said an Mountain America spokeswoman, noting the CU has been looking at car pooling and bus pass options among other alternatives.
America First, with 1,700 employees, said it was doing the same research on shortened hours, telecommuting from home and bus passes.
The Utah League of Credit Unions said it has not heard or seen any mention of any CU pursuing a four-day work week along the state's lines, but it would be gauging the effect of the state's move in the month ahead.
The state's Republican governor announced in June that agencies employing nearly 17,000 employees would go to a 10-hour, four-day week, with hours of operation extended from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. The change would impact the Division of Motor Vehicles and Natural Resources, for example, but would exclude Corrections and Public Safety.
The Department of Financial Institutions said it, too, would be closing its offices on Fridays, but "supervisors and field examiners would still be working that day using cell phones," attending to business and, if need be, participating in CU board meetings.
"For years, we have some examiners in the department operating on nine-hour days with every other Friday off," explained Orla Beth Peck, CU supervisor, noting that the Federal Reserve and FDIC have flexible schedules for examiners and "we like to be in line with those agencies."
In his order, Gov. Huntsman said essential workers like highway patrol troopers and prison officers would not be affected, although their administration offices will close. Utah courts, public schools and colleges would not change nor will the governor's office.