Four-day working week trial for shared waste service approved and bin collection rounds to be reviewed

Cambridge City Council has approved a new set of measures which will enable the Greater Cambridge Shared Waste Service to deliver a more effective bin collection service – a move that will see the introduction of a four-day working week for the service.

Councillors approved the recommendations in a report presented to last week’s Strategy and Resources Scrutiny Committee. The Shared Waste Service, which is responsible for the collection of household bins in the city of Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire, should join the ongoing four-day week trial underway at South Cambridgeshire District Council.

Councillors approved a review of collection rounds to ensure vehicles are taking the most efficient routes and to accommodate the four-day week trial.

Collection round reviews are typically carried out every three to five years and the routes were last reviewed in 2017. With an increasing number of just over 10% households in Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire since 2017, a review of the routes is due. The results will allow for more efficient and sustainable collections to be carried out by the waste crews.

The four-day week trial for members of staff of the Shared Waste Service will run for three months and will be an important consideration in the review of collection rounds. The exact details of the changes will be confirmed once the collection rounds have been reviewed. Residents will receive direct information about any changes before they take place.

Members of South Cambridgeshire District Council approved the three month trial for the bin crews in May.

The four-day week trial aims to address issues of staff wellbeing and sickness, as well as staff recruitment and retention. The result of the trial will be presented to the Strategy and Resources Scrutiny Committee this autumn. Over the three month period, the effectiveness of the routes will be carefully scrutinised.

Cllr Rosy Moore, Executive Councillor for Climate Action and Environment, said: “We welcome the four-day working week trial for the bin crews and look forward to seeing the outcomes. So far, the independently assessed evidence from the South Cambridgeshire District Council’s trial has been positive. They have managed to recruit to hard to fill roles, which is a problem that the Shared Waste Service also faces.

“As the city continues to grow, we need to make sure that we are delivering our services in the most effective and sustainable way possible.

“Reviewing our bin collection rounds and making changes is an important part of this. We hope that by taking this step now it will put us in a good position for future years to come as the city continues to develop further.

“We are committed to delivering high quality, sustainable services that ensure value for money for our residents.”