4 Aug 2009

Appliance company returns to 40-hour week

9:15 am on 4 August 2009

Fisher & Paykel Appliances has moved back to a 40-hour working week as the company heads into its peak production period.

The whiteware manufacturer was among the first in April to join the Government's nine-day fortnight scheme, which it says saved 60 jobs at its refrigeration assembly plant during the quiet winter months.

The company returned to a normal working week on Monday, two months earlier than expected.

Fisher & Paykel says international demand has not returned to normal, but there is enough work over the next eight months to enable the company to reinstate a 40-hour week.

However, it says the situation beyond March remains uncertain.

Under the agreement, the Government and the company split the cost of 3.5 hours per week. The remaining 1.5 hours were taken as paid leave.

In addition, employees attended a company-funded training programme for 3.5 hours per fortnight.