Rather than the traditional eight-hour work day, five days per week, Chrysler is proposing that its new program will see employees commuting less and therefore using less petrol weekly, and that it is also more economical for the plant itself as machines and processes won't need to be started and stopped as often. Some machines, like the huge paint ovens, can be fully shut off with a three-day weekend, where they would have to run throughout the weekend of a five-day work week to be ready on Monday morning. Shutting those down saves both natural gas and electricity, reports the Detroit Free Press.
Switching to a four-day work week is expected to save Chrysler less than $10 million annually, but the proposal is still under discussion between Chrysler and the UAW. Auto workers are yet to have their say in a public forum, but analysts are predicting that the proposal will be embraced by most auto workers.
In addition to a four-day work week, other energy saving measures are being implemented including a possible partnership with other companies to reduce freight costs by sharing space and shipping trucks, especially with companies that share parallel routes.