JOINT STATEMENT REGARDING REALIGNMENT OF WORKLOAD IN RELATION TO TRAFFIC SMOOTHING IN THE PROCESSING FUNCTION AND MAIL CENTRE WORKPLAN
Branches and representatives will be aware that the department have been in discussions for some time on issues relating to the Processing Workplan and business aspirations to smooth the flow of traffic and avoid pinch points in the Pipeline, in particular in the RDC Network.
From a CWU perspective concerns had been raised with the department that the business were attempting to advance 2c items onto the night shift using the rationale of White Book Staffing contingency arrangements. Discussions culminated in an interim position being reached on a Joint Statement Regarding Mail Centre Workplan and Christmas Arrangements for the Processing Function circulated in LTB 647/16 on the 2nd November 2016.
That Joint Statement covered seasonal arrangements to protect the Pipeline during peak and committed both parties to further discussions on longer term, mutual interest solutions. It was stipulated that should no final position be reached by 17th January 2017 then the agreed pre-Christmas arrangements at each site should be reinstated, which happened as talks had not concluded.
It has become apparent that changing customer requirements, traffic streams and volumetrics are all impacting on our Pipeline and available capacity at our RDC’s at certain times of the day and that there are operational benefits in despatching available volumes of Outward 2c and Tracked earlier.
Discussions have continued on these issues with the department also pursuing an agenda based on ending any misuse of White Book contingency arrangements to advance traffic and the achievement of the current Conference Policy in relation to 2c and Workplan:
Motion: 22 – 2015
This Conference instructs the Postal Executive that the National Workplan should be altered to protect early shifts in Mail Centres as the emphasis on doing 2nd class traffic on late shift and night shift is having a detrimental effect on the early shifts.
These discussions have now concluded with the attached Joint Statement which we believe does enable discussions on a smoothing of traffic flows across the Pipeline through realignment of workload across the 24 hour period and includes the achievement of a number of significant commitments in regard to the protection of early shifts across the Mail Centre Network. These include:
➢ A statement confirming that both parties recognise the historic impacts of workload and traffic changes on early shifts in Mail Centres and that the processing of a non-premium product, i.e. 2c on the night shift is not cost efficient and should be avoided.
➢ A further statement recognising that work should not be realigned from early shifts to night shifts solely due to under-utilised contingency arrangements.
➢ A commitment that any agreed arrangements to advance 2c to achieve the aspiration of 50% by 10.00 should retain the work on the early shift and is conditional that arrangements maintain viable alternative workload in the post 10.00 period through the realignment of other work streams.
Branches will note that in addition the Joint Statement also contains commitments that any revised arrangements should:
➢ Maximise full time employment across all shifts with efficient alignment to workload.
➢ Reduce to a minimum, reliance on agency or casual resource.
➢ Maintain meaningful workload and earnings opportunities by aligning resources appropriately across all shifts.
In recognition that at some sites our Representatives have negotiated arrangements which go beyond the 50% 2c aspiration on the basis that they were mutual interest, the Joint Statement allows for such agreements as long as there is no adverse affect on early shift duty numbers or earnings opportunities.
We have also confirmed that where the 50% of 2c by 10.00 has already been achieved then no further activity is required.
Branches and representatives should also note that this agreement does not change National Workplan and that any proposed realignment of workload should support National Workplan and Core Standards.
The department believes that the discussions have produced some significant concessions and in line with the spirit and intent of the Conference Policy provide real commitments to the protection of early shifts in Mail Centres. The Joint Statement should also provide real clarity on what is in scope in any realignment of Processing workload. Moreover the Joint Statement, for the first time in many years, commits the business to measures designed to protect early shifts across the Mail Centre Network.
Any enquiries in relation to this LTB should be addressed to Davie Robertson, Assistant Secretary, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com quoting reference number: 722.01.
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