Fujitsu Redundancies

Fujitsu has still provided no real justification for the proposed 1200 job cuts in the UK. UNITE, PCS and the UK Consultative Forum (UKCF) have all complained strongly about how the company has set about the process, with information being provided piecemeal to different employees combined with the confusing and divisive approach of having six parallel consultation forums.
This is the best view UNITE has at this stage of the overall picture:

Pool of employees at risk of redundancy

Subgroup

Number of employees at risk

Numbers of whom are covered by collective bargaining

Consultation Forum 1

 

Engineering

Engineering Services

1350

60 UNITE

170 PCS

MOD Ops

360

20 UNITE

1 PCS

Consultation Forum 2

 

Application Services

 

1510

120 UNITE

40 PCS

Consultation Forum 3

 

Government & Defence

 

540

5 UNITE

30 PCS

Consultation Forum 4

 

Private Sector Business Division

 

500

30 UNITE

Consultation Forum 5

 

Central Functions

HR

130

15 UNITE

Finance

280

10 UNITE

Commercial

100

5 UNITE

Business Assurance

30

5 UNITE

Consultation Forum 6

 

Core Division

Data Centres & Networks

40

2 UNITE

Service Desks

10

 

Logistics

15

 

Lutterworth

20

 

Core Shared Service

40

3 UNITE

30 PCS

Systems Operations

50

 

HMRC Systems Operations

60

1 UNITE

P&PM

940

60 UNITE

2 PCS

Business Consultants

70

2 UNITE

Note 1: The numbers above are rounded and the picture could of course change.
Note 2: For the avoidance of doubt, the “UNITE” and “PCS” figures above are not the numbers of union members in the group, but the numbers of employees covered by collective bargaining. Most UNITE members are not yet covered by collective bargaining and many employees who are covered are not yet UNITE members.
The company wants to set up the “Consultation Forums” on a very tight timescale, with very scant information available to employees. If you are both “at risk” and not in one of the areas covered by collective bargaining, please seriously considering standing for election to your consultation forum. UNITE and PCS will be able to provide representation through their normal structures for employees covered by collective bargaining.
To stand for election, you need to complete and return the nomination form to HRdirect to arrive no later than 12 noon on Thursday 3rd September.
The company has told UNITE that each “subgroup” within each “pool” in the table above will be treated as a separate constituency for the purposes of elections, so we need good candidates for every one. The company has not yet declared how many seats there will be on each forum, so we don’t know how many candidates are required. UNITE has passed on the concerns raised by many employees that asking for nominations before making the allocation of seats public is bound to create the impression that the company is rigging the results.
UNITE and PCS reps have discussed how to approach this difficult situation. Your reps are encouraging lots of members, reps and activists to put in their nomination forms, and to let your reps know you have done so by emailing us. You can also email in a draft election address if you want someone to cast an eye over it for you. When we find out how many seats there are in each forum, who has stood etc, UNITE and PCS reps will work with the candidates to try to agree whether some candidates should withdraw, and who the unions should ask members to support in any elections. It is beneficial for all staff (union members or not) to have union members representing them in the consultation process, because they have access to additional support, advice and help through the union.
The company intends to provide training to the forum reps, and this is welcome. However, one has to question whether this training will really be adequate – isn’t this a case of the poacher training the gamekeepers? UNITE has already approached the company seeking agreement to provide training on redundancy to its reps across the country.
We know that many employees have all sorts of questions about the redundancy situation. Please bear with your reps while we find out more about the situation and focus on the most urgent issues. UNITE will ensure that its members are kept fully informed.
One of the most common questions reps are being asked relates to redundancy terms – what you would get paid if you were made redundant. There are many different sets of redundancy terms in Fujitsu. UNITE has a “redundancy calculator” that helps you get an estimate of your redundancy payment if you know which contract type (redundancy terms) you are on, covering many of the common varieties.
NB: The calculator uses the current limit on weekly earnings for statutory redundancy payments, which is £350. This is due to rise to £380 on 1 October 2009. This will increase redundancy payments for employees on a variety of redundancy terms if their redundancy takes place after that date.
If Fujitsu was offering all staff the same severance terms as the two directors who shared £1.6m “compensation for loss of office” last year, the company would probably find little opposition to the redundancies.
The company is likely to tell you which redundancy terms they think you are on at some stage in the process. If you need to know more urgently, you could ask HRdirect. Bear in mind that they may simply tell you what is on their database, which may or may not be correct.
One of the gains from the settlement of the Manchester dispute in 2007 was the which clarifies redundancy terms for employees in the Manchester bargaining unit. The company has rolled out some of the gains from the campaign nationally, including the way of deciding who is covered by the Security of Employment Agreement (SEA). You can find the company statement on this in section 9 of the minutes of the UK Consultative Forum (UKCF) meeting on 5th December 2007.
If you want to understand the redundancy process, there are a range of useful resources, including the TUC WorkSmart guide to redundancy and the UNITE guide to redundancy.

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Unite members across Fujitsu Services Limited in the UK have been taking industrial as part of their dispute over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions. Action from 28 February has included 15 days of strikes and ongoing action short of strike.

INDUSTRIAL ACTION IS CURRENTLY SUSPENDED but members have voted by 92% to reject a company offer and renewed campaign plans are being made.

The national dispute follows the resolution of a local dispute in Manchester which included 12 strike days.

Further information is available here including events, pickets, a downloadable appeal for support leaflet and how to donate to our strike fund.

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