Joint Statement Regarding Resource Realignment in Mail Centres, Regional Distribution Centres and Walk Bundling Centres to Support Deployment of Guiding Principles of Employment Security and Mutual Interest Approach to Future Challenges and Opportunities and the Shorter Working Week
Branches and representatives will be aware that Royal Mail and the CWU are working together to deploy the significant joint commitments contained within the Guiding Principles of Employment Security and Mutual Interest Approach, which include a review of current resourcing practices within the Processing Function. This included the provision of a framework and guidelines for the necessary resource realignment activity to deliver the 1st hour reduction in the working week in October 2018.
The department has therefore been engaged in extensive discussions with the business in relation to an overall resourcing strategy for the Processing function (Mail Centres), RDC’s and WBC’s, who also now fall under the remit of Processing line management.
The resourcing discussions centered on the following commitments in regard to the functions concerned:
Establishing the current state of resourcing in line with current agreements through the deployment of a resourcing checklist.
Establishing and deploying best practice with regard to Weekly Resourcing Meetings as standard.
Agreeing Guidelines for the Resourcing Realignment activity to deliver the 1st hour reduction in working time.
Agreeing a Quality Checklist.
CWU expertise from the field was utilised as part of a Working Group process and discussions have now concluded with a number of documents being agreed and endorsed by the Postal Executive, which the department believe fully support the CWU agenda, will establish resourcing best practice and will assist Branches and Representatives in ensuring that the 1st hour reduction in the SWW is delivered in full in October 2018.
Colleagues will appreciate that while Mail Centres, RDC’s and WBC’s all fall under the Processing banner there will be some differences in relation to the data and processes in each of the functions. Therefore the attached Joint Statement contains two Appendices containing the relevant documentation.
In respect of Mail Centre Resourcing activity and arrangements the relevant documentation can be found at Appendix 1 to the attached Joint Statement:
Annex A – A Guide for Mail Centre Resourcing Realignment.
Annex B – Guidance Document Mail Centres Resourcing Meetings.
Annex B1 – Mail Centre Weekly Resourcing Meeting (Agenda/Template).
Annex C – Resourcing Checklist – Processing
Annex D – Quality Checklist for Processing.
In respect of RDC and WBC Resourcing activity and arrangements the relevant documentation can be found at Appendix 2 to the attached Joint Statement:
Annex A – A Guide for RDC/WBC Resourcing Realignment.
Annex B – Guidance Document RDC/WBC Resourcing Meetings.
Annex B1 – RDC/WBC Weekly Resourcing Meeting (Agenda/Template).
Annex C – Resourcing Checklist – RDC/WBC.
Annex D – Quality Checklist for RDC’s/WBC’s*
*Note: Discussions are currently ongoing in relation to finalising the RDC/WBC Quality Checklist and it will be the intention to share this and append to the attached Joint Statement in the near future.
Colleagues will note that the attached Joint Statement and Appendices clearly reaffirms the contents in the Guiding Principles of Employment Security agreement with regard to re-establishing proper resourcing practices across the Processing Functions and includes commitments:
To maximise Full Time Working.
To fair and manageable workload, balancing customer needs with employee aspirations in regard to earnings and work life balance.
Reduction in the reliance on Agency Resource.
A review of the contractual status of part-time workers.
To minimise employee disruption – movement between shifts should be avoided.
That the Weekly Resourcing Meetings will be the local forum for jointly reviewing past and current resourcing requirements.
A process for the review of contractual hours in March and September with sign off by the Process/Collections Director/CWU Divisional Representative.
The documentation provides clear guidance on the full range of aspects to be considered in any resourcing realignment activity designed to deliver the 1st hour reduction in working time for the functions concerned. It also establishes a process for weekly updates from each unit to the Process Director and Divisional Representative. This document is directly supported by the additional Guidelines to the process contained in Annex A of both Appendices (including a Model Week formula in respect of Mail Centres only).
At Annex B and B1 are new guidance documents designed to standardise the format, contents and outputs of the Resourcing Meetings. Annex B includes clear guidance on the purpose of the meetings, the activities and actions required, the attendees and the data required to properly agree resourcing requirements. Annex B1 creates a standard template for the display of the meeting outputs.
Annex C contains the agreed Resourcing Checklist, which will initially be used to establish the current state but will also be used as a continuous reference point for the ongoing resourcing activity established as part of this process.
Annex D provides a Quality Checklist which again will be used as a continuous reference point for the ongoing resourcing activity established as part of this process.
Joint launch activity took place for Plant Managers and Divisional/Area Representatives at Birmingham Branch Offices on the 20th June 2018 so that onward cascade of the process could be communicated.
As communicated at the National Launch Event, both Royal Mail and the CWU have confirmed that the realignment activity will be based on an assessment of requirement at each site and will not necessarily require a full duty revision, however the realignment will include the removal of time required to deploy the SWW.
Given the huge variation in operational arrangements across the Processing estate it has been agreed that the manner in which working time will be reduced will not be determined centrally. Branches and representatives therefore have autonomy to agree locally the manner in which the reduction in working time will be deployed across all shifts and duties at their site.
Both parties have also reaffirmed that there are no budgetary or aspirational productivity targets as part of the Resource Realignment process and that the realignment activity will be based on the established current actual throughputs at each site.
The department believes that the contents and processes defined in the Joint Statement on Resource Realignment and the supporting documentation contained in the Appendices provide the necessary guidance and support structure for our Representatives to ensure that the commitments in the Guiding Principles agreement with regard to Resourcing and the SWW are delivered in full.
Colleagues should note that the attached documentation does not apply to Royal Mail International. As conveyed at the representatives briefing on the 20th June 2018, discussions relating to specific documentation on resource realignment activity in RMI is currently ongoing. The outputs of those discussions will be shared with Branches in due course.
Any enquiries in relation to this LTB should be addressed to: Davie Robertson, Assistant Secretary,