UNITE continues to support members affected by piecemeal redundancy exercises across the company. One of the members involved in the Business Operations has recently secured an alternative role within Fujitsu which he is enjoying and has provided a report about the support UNITE provided:
- Making yourself heard – once you are selected for redundancy, you feel as though you have little influence on what is happening; no-one will care what you have to say. The union is able to make your voice heard and points made, both directly and through Fujitsu Voice. You may think you are the only person with an issue or point to make but the union is able to collect these together from others who might be in the same position.
- What’s happening – the union was able to tell me what was happening and as importantly what should happen in the process. It is not unusual for the company to get something wrong. You need help to recognise if that has occurred. There were newsletters and meetings where the redundancy activity was discussed.
- Appeals and hearings – these are stressful times and I was helped and accompanied by a member of the union at each occasion. It is really valuable to have someone who has been through the process before and understands your rights and the company’s obligations. They are objective and able to tell you when a course of action is likely to bring results. They also gave me ideas to use in relation to my appeals hearings when I had had enough.
- Redeployment – the company support for redeployment is extremely limited. Unite pro-actively tried to help with my redeployment; suggesting roles and operating an informal job-swap scheme which almost succeeded in my case. They also actively campaigned for voluntary redundancies to help anyone who wanted to stay. At the time I was selected, there were very few jobs on Opportunities and I needed support to remain working through my notice to maximise my chance of finding a role.
- Manchester Annex 1 agreement – this agreement gave me additional rights and support through the consultation period and beyond. I got a 90 days consultation period as a right compared to the 30 days for others. The Union fought to get all those affected by redundancy to have the same 90 day period. I was able to remain in the company long enough to find an alternative role.
- Focus on me – as we got closer to the date for potentially leaving the company I felt an increased focus on my case, down to the point when a special newsletter was circulated to highlight my position and expand the opportunity for finding another role. There was always someone to talk to and provide advice. This is really valuable as most people around you have ‘moved on’ to new roles or new focus.