Changing times: The future of working time in Scotland
In Scotland, a newly established political commitment to reducing working time presents an opportunity to progress the working time debate beyond high-level aspirations to achieve a four-day working week.
How we work is changing. The Covid-19 pandemic has caused acute disruption to workplaces across Scotland – but in response, we have seen workforces and employers come together to carve out new ways of organising work, from changing shift patterns to new forms of flexibility. The new Scottish government has committed to exploring a shorter working week as a step towards a ‘wellbeing economy’, opening up a new conversation about how we organise work.
Across Scotland’s workforce, too many people struggle to make ends meet due to a lack of available hours or are pushed towards working excessively long hours due to low pay and a lack of security. In this report, we propose a roadmap towards shorter working time in Scotland, while recognising that any progressive vision for how we work in the future must also prioritise the twin challenges of over-employment and under-employment.