Stage 2 pay negotiations continue this afternoon, and if the company sticks to the most recently agreed timetable, there will be a new pay offer tomorrow (Tuesday) for members to vote on at the members’ meeting on Friday.
So far, while progress is being made in some areas, it is not generally encouraging. The company has been consistently failing to honour its commitments, such as:
- Incorporating points from last year’s ACAS agreement and pension change into the agreement
- Providing information to allow both parties to model the costs and benefits of proposals
- Sticking to agreed timescales
It is also proving difficult to persuade the company to:
- offer a cost-of-living increase in line with employees’ preferences
- increase the £12,000 minimum rate of pay, despite high inflation which the IFS confirmed is hitting the lowest paid hardest
- increase the helpdesk pay scales, which have only increased 3.6% in 10 years, while the cost of living has increased by more than 30% and the National Minimum Wage has increased by 45%
- offer fair and objective process with clear criteria for people to appeal if they believe they have been doing work which matches a better role code than their current one
- ensure individuals get paid or given time off in lieu for additional hours unless this right has clearly been “bought out” with some other aspect of pay and benefits
- remove the cap on POV mileage rates so that people without benefit cars or allowances get paid the full cost of their travel on company business, just as those in more senior roles do
It is hoped that further progress will be made in today’s negotiations.
If members aren’t satisfied with the offer the company makes tomorrow, it will be important for your negotiating team to have a strong mandate for stage 3 negotiations, so a large attendance at Friday’s members’ meeting is vital.