Manchester: Report from members’ meeting

Thanks to everyone who attended today’s members’ meeting.
The meeting opened with an overview of issues reps have been dealing with on behalf of members.  The issues include:

  • Redundancies, Out Of Hours and pay are on the agenda later
  • Relocation of procurement team to Warrington.
  • Closure of MAN23 and redeployment of staff.
  • Move from D1-D4 to Rise+ pay system for Service Desk staff.  The company is overdue uploading data onto the HR Database and enabling individuals to access information via SelfService.  Will require updated Manchester Pay & Benefits Agreement.
  • A number of individual cases for members.
  • Individual issues for four reps – causing a concern over fair treatment.
  • TUPE to HP on the ATLAS defence contract just completed.
  • TUPEs to Wincor-Nixdorf and HP on the Tesco contract ongoing.  This is proving very difficult, with the new employers being uncooperative and trying to get away with worsening Ts & Cs and working practices.
  • H&S inspections being planned, following the MAN35 closure.  We also plan a survey of staff on this topic to identify issues that need addressing now.
  • H&S reps talking to the company about risk assessments.
  • Learning Reps and Environmental Reps are organising Learning At Work Day next week (17th May).
  • Reduction in hours without loss of pay for some of the people on over 37 hours.  Some complete, the company is arguing about others.
  • Changing working patterns for PSEs in Service Desks.
  • Correcting promotions that were implemented last year with no pay rise.
  • WINTEL team Out Of Hours issues – payment rates and working arrangements.
  • Beginning to hand over certain tasks and issues to reps outside Manchester under the new “Annex 2” agreement on time for reps’ duties.

Pay
Members discussed a more detailed report on the company’s plans for the pay review outside the bargaining unit this year, and a new confidential UNITE briefing which included updated median salaries and guideline bonus rates.  The briefing is confidential and members are asked not to pass it on.  It showed that median salaries have gone down for many roles, and many more have not kept pace with the size of pay “pots” never mind inflation.
One member queried the bonus shown for DEV/5 – reps can confirm this is the information provided by the company and it does not represent a change from previous years.
Reps thanked everyone who had already completed the paper or online pay survey.  This had helped draft the pay claim, but more responses are still welcome – they will help with the negotiations too.
Members approved the pay claim as circulated earlier today, without making any amendments.
Data provided by the company shows that the majority of employees in the bargaining unit do not yet have a valid Performance Appraisal Category (PAC) uploaded on the system for this year.  All should have been completed by the end of April. Members are urged to check and chase their PAC with their managers to avoid losing out in the pay review.
Members in Service Desks were reminded that their appraisal for this year should be against the D1-D4 system, not Rise+.  For more information, see the joint notice sent out on 10th April from Joanne Ward.
Redundancies
Members discussed an update on the redundancies in Business Operations and Business & Application Services (BAS).  Some employees outside the bargaining unit have already been dismissed.  The company is adopting an inconsistent approach which makes Compulsory Redundancies far more likely.  There is a risk that the company will force members in the bargaining unit out of the company through redundancy without their agreement for the first time since the Annex 1 agreement was introduced in 2007.  Reps are concerned there could be further redundancies in other areas.
Out Of Hours
At the last members’ meeting it was decided to push for harmonisation of Out Of Hours terms (overtime, shift, standby, callout) rather than the gradual introduction of very unfavourable “interim” terms.  The company was initially strongly opposed to this approach, but discussions have become much more constructive and both approaches are being explored.
Other Business
UNITE members in health, MOD and government departments are due to strike on Thursday 10th May in defence of their pensions.  They will be joined by members of PCS, UCU, NIPSA and RMT.  Members are encouraged to show their support.  Details of picket lines, marches and a rally in Manchester are on the Manchester TUC web site.  A collection raised £60 which will be taken down to the picket at North Manchester General Hospital on Thursday.
There was an update on the creation of a new Fujitsu North-West UNITE branch which will include all members in the Manchester bargaining unit, plus members in Crewe, Warrington and elsewhere.  This should help bring more union resources closer to the members.  Branch officers will be elected in June.
The existing branch (Greater Manchester IT branch) meets (probably for the last time) on Thursday 10th May at 5:30pm in 34GCR2.  A guest speaker will discuss problems with employment law and government plans to make it even less favourable to working people.

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Sign the petition – defend the union

Unite members across Fujitsu Services Limited in the UK are fighting over job security, for union recognition, against victimisation of reps, and over pay and pensions. Members nationally took industrial from 28 February including 15 days of strikes and ongoing action short of strike, after 12 days of local strikes in Manchester.

INDUSTRIAL ACTION IS CURRENTLY SUSPENDED but members have voted by 92% to reject a company offer.

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

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