Ministerial Order 301/2022 was published on 20 December, approving the development of the “Four-Day Work Week” plot program aimed at an experimental adoption by private corporations of a four-day workweek.

The pilot program will start in 2023 and for companies that decide to join its implementation is expected to occur in the course of the second semester.

What is the «Four-Day Work Week» program?

The aim of the pilot program is to enable private companies and their employees to implement, on an experimental basis, a reduction of the working week to four days. The program’s objectives are:

  • Evaluate new ways of organizing and balancing working periods that take into consideration employees’ interests, and reduce companies’ operating and environmental costs
  • Evaluate the impacts of the reduction of the working period, without reduction of salary, on the employees’ and respective households’ quality of life
  • Evaluate the impacts on productivity, quality of services, and absenteeism

What are the program’s main features?

  • The program will be open to all private-sector companies
  • It will have a duration of 6 months
  • Companies join the program on a voluntary and reversible basis;
  • The government provides technical and managerial support to the transition (through IEFP, P.)
  • The experience may not involve a reduction of employees’ salary and must encompass a reduction of the weekly working hours (which may be 32, 34, or 36 hours, to be defined by agreement between the company and its employees)
  • There will be no financial support (the Government’s support will only consist of technical and managerial support)
  • A majority of employees shall be included in the experience, with exceptions made to large corporations where the program may be tested in some of its undertakings or departments

What must companies that envisage signing up do?

In the first months of 2023, several promotion and information sessions will take place.
The selection of companies and the drafting of the Pilot study are expected to occur in the first semester of 2023.
IEFP’s website is already available with a form to enable companies to show their interest in participating. Registrations are now open for Information sessions that are scheduled for January the 6th and the 20th at 3 pm.

For more information please contact:

Hugo Martins Braz
Tiago Lopes Fernandez