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Management and HQ Clerical Pay Claim

6 January 2011

Update on the Pay meeting with ATW on 14 December 2010.

Update after the Ballot closed


As stated in my last circular the ballot result received as of 7 December 2010 was too close to call. Of those ballot papers received there was near a 50% split on accepting or rejecting the offer and the fact that there are still ballot papers not received in the post it left the company council reps and myself in a difficult position. We took the view that:
- We had no mandate to accept the offer
- There was feedback from members that they would have voted differently and against the offer if they had known the offers made to other grade groups in advance of our ballot
- Having spoken to members the reps weren’t receiving feedback that there was an overall appetite to go into dispute with the company over pay.

As such it was clear that we needed to push for a higher offer on the basis that whilst the bargaining group is made up of both HQ Clerical & Managers, most of our management members will be put at detriment due to any differentials caused by other grade groups receiving a higher pay offer.

Meeting


During the meeting we explained our position to the company regarding the ballot result being split but that taking on board feedback from members who would have voted differently there was a need to increase the offer to appease members unhappy about the offers made to other groups. This led to a very long and protracted meeting and on more than one occasion the company threatened imposing the previous pay offer upon us, as we wouldn’t tell them the full breakdown of the ballot results. This led to them pushing to make a deal on the day again with the threat of withdrawing any offer should we not agree to it.

Final Offer


During the meeting the company made some concessions at different times of the meeting and we gradually crept towards their final offer. Whilst it didn’t meet our aspirations the company were saying that there was no more money to be offered in Year 1. The only concessions made were in year 2 and around the special events day payments and we entered into an agreement to participate in a joint working party to look at the viability of introducing flexible working to increase the offers made. The company made it clear that the offer below was only available if we accepted it on the day and could be withdrawn if we didn’t accept it.

Year 1 =

- A pay offer of 4.3% comprising of 3.7% basic award; 0.4% productivity for involvement in business improvement activity and 0.2%, which represents the bringing forward of this amount originally offered for year 2, effective from the pay anniversary of 1 July 2010.
- An improvement in Special event payments which provides a two-tier payment system applicable to any employee working as part of the Special Event plan. The two rates are £150 for Event Support team members and £200 for the Event Delivery team members as outlined in the ‘Special Event working’ document. Events worked since the pay anniversary of 1 July 2010, will receive the backdated value of this item.
- Payment of either triple time or double time plus a day in lieu for anyone either on call or working on Christmas Day and Boxing Day going forward.
- A commitment to review Fleet management hours of work as long as it comes at no additional cost to the business.

Year 2 =

- Either RPI+ 0.2% (based on May 2011 figure) or 3.7% (3.5% + 0.2%), whichever is greater effective from the pay anniversary date of 1 July 2011.
- A commitment to participate in a joint working party, which will look at the viability of introducing flexible working practices which, will have completed its work no later than June 2011.

This offer constitutes a minimum increase in pay of 8% over the two years plus the additional elements explained above. This is an increase in real terms of 0.7% from the last offer that was made plus the additional elements for those that work special events days.

Outcome


This represented the company’s “final, final” offer, which was only available on that day. Your reps were conscious of this fact and that whilst the ballot didn’t give us a mandate to accept the previous offer there was around 50% of our members who would have accepted it. Given the situation and the alternatives open to us, for which there didn’t appear to be much support from the membership, the Company Council decided to accept the offer.

We have no doubt that there will be groups of members still unhappy with the situation and the offer made, we feel that we have received the best offer that the company were prepared to make without the need to go into dispute.

The union is keen that once other grade groups agree their pay offers that we work with members who may see erosion of the differentials between themselves and those that they manage. Once we are in a position to know the final settlements for other grades we will actively take on board members’ concerns around the above and seek resolution with the company where there is strength of feeling.
This is an important point, as there needs to be strength in both numbers and feeling on any issues that we take forward with the company in future.

Therefore we need to have as many members within the collective bargaining group as possible that will take a part in the union by voting and expressing views to us so that we can be steered in the right direction.

There is only one union, TSSA which negotiates on behalf of Management and HQ Clerical staff so please encourage your colleagues to join us and actively take part in future negotiations and issues that arise with the company. A membership form can be obtained on our website

If you have comments or queries about the above talks then I would welcome these and you can email me at valentinea@tssa.org.uk

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