JOINT STATEMENT BETWEEN ROYAL MAIL RELAY OPERATIONS AND THE COMMUNICATION WORKERS UNION IN RELATION TO THE CESSATION OF THE BRITISH GAS CONTRACT

JOINT STATEMENT BETWEEN ROYAL MAIL RELAY OPERATIONS AND THE COMMUNICATION WORKERS UNION IN RELATION TO THE CESSATION OF THE BRITISH GAS CONTRACT

Branches and representatives will be aware that following tender activity Royal Mail Specialist Services/Relay has been unsuccessful in their bid to retain the British Gas contract. The existing contract was due to expire in March 2020 however, following discussions with British Gas, the business has been able to secure a phased exit plan (Annex A) which will commence in April and be concluded by 2020.

The contract loss will require adjustments in respect of the Relay operation, which will vary on a unit by unit basis. Discussions have therefore been taking place with the business to conclude a Joint Statement to provide an update to members and a framework for timely local engagement to take place.

A copy of the Joint Statement, which has been endorsed by the Postal Executive, is attached for your information (Annex B).

Colleagues will note that PFW Regional Organisers and local RMSS/Relay representatives will be fully involved in discussions for the required changes and people issues, which will be progressed in line with National agreements, the IR Framework, MTSF and adhere to agreed principles. Equally, it has been confirmed that the transition will be achieved without recourse to compulsory redundancies.

The National Relay Joint Working Group will monitor the deployment throughout the phased exit plan and provide support where required.

Branches and representatives are requested to ensure that RMSS/Relay members are made aware of this LTB and the attached Joint Statement.

Any enquiries in relation to this LTB should be addressed to Davie Robertson, Assistant Secretary, email: shayman@cwu.org, quoting reference: 218.03.

Yours sincerely

Davie Robertson
Assistant Secretary

 

ANNEX A 

BRITISH GAS CONTRACT – PHASED EXIT PLAN

Depot – Last delivery day

Milton Keynes Saturday, 4th April

Peterborough Saturday, 18th April

Carlisle Saturday, 2nd May

Wednesbury Saturday, 2nd May

Exeter Saturday, 16th May

Swansea Saturday, 23rd May

Bristol Saturday, 6th June

Edinburgh Saturday, 20th June

Thurrock Saturday, 4th July

Gateshead Saturday, 18th July

Nottingham Saturday, 1st August

Leeds Saturday, 15th August

Southampton Saturday, 29th August

Epsom Saturday, 12th September

Manchester Saturday, 26th September

 

ANNEX B 

JOINT STATEMENT BETWEEN ROYAL MAIL RELAY OPERATIONS AND THE COMMUNICATION WORKERS UNION IN RELATION TO THE CESSATION OF THE BRITISH GAS CONTRACT

Background

Royal Mail (RM) and the Communication Workers Union (CWU) are working together in developing key business policies, mutual interest solutions and a new culture, which are at the core of the commitments in the Agenda for Growth, Stability and Long Term Success Agreement.

Both parties recognise that creating the right constructive joint working relationships is key to the success of the business and the commitment to provide sustainable employment across all functions of the business in an increasingly competitive and rapidly evolving environment.

Introduction

Colleagues will be aware Relay were unsuccessful in retaining the British Gas contract in the recent tender process, with the contract moving to an alternate supplier. A phased exit plan of this contract has now been agreed with British Gas, which will commence in April and be concluded by September 2020.

National planning activity on the operational change required to accommodate the removal of the British Gas workload while ensuring that duty structures remain robust has been undertaken by the business and the outputs are now ready to be shared. To ensure all operational and any identified peoples issues relating to this change can be progressed in a timely manner, both parties agree that local engagement on a depot by depot basis should now commence.

Employee Impact/People Issues

It is anticipated that the impact of the change will vary across the Relay network, however it has been jointly recognised and accepted that in all cases the timely resolution of people issues will be a key priority. In line with our Nationally agreed commitments both parties confirm that the transition will be achieved without recourse to compulsory redundancies.

On a unit by unit basis local discussions and negotiations should consider all aspects of the impact and be progressed in line with National agreements, the IR Framework and MTSF and adhere to the following principles:

  • Prior to the application of the processes and policies contained within the MTSF agreement consideration will be given to:
  • The removal of all agency/casual resource
  • Where jointly agreed necessary, the cessation of Fixed Term Contracts.
  • No employee will be compelled to buy down their hours or convert to a part-time contract.
  • No part-time employee will be compelled to increase their contractual hours.
  • In all units where it is anticipated that there may be a surplus following the revision activity preference exercise activity will take place.
  • Wherever possible the aim will be to meet individual’s first preference and offer suitable alternative jobs that take into account individuals’ personal circumstances, including any additional travelling distances and time.
  • The movement of workload will be based on operational needs including the ability of gaining offices to maintain quality of service. When moving workload, people issues will also be considered in line with the existing National policies and procedures, including Managing the Surplus Framework (MTSF).
  • In addition to the terms of MTSF, support will be provided to help individuals so they can make realistic and appropriate choices for their future.

CWU Involvement

Both parties agree it is essential there is joint involvement in all activity associated to this change with all relevant information shared throughout the process.

The role of the CWU representatives within these processes is fully recognised, as is the requirement for appropriate release in order for them to meaningfully prepare, participate and obtain the views of their members. It is agreed that in line with the IR Framework, CWU representatives undertaking this work will not suffer financial loss. To this end it is agreed that local managers will facilitate this release and that all reasonable requests for release will be agreed.

Relay will ensure that management teams liaise with their local representatives and CWU Regional Organisers to resolve any outstanding people issues.

The National Relay Joint Working Group (JWG) will monitor the deployment throughout the phased exit plan and provide support where required.

Any questions of interpretation, implementation or application of this Joint Statement should be referred to the signatories for resolution.

Ian Simpson – Head of Relay Operations, Royal Mail

Davie Robertson – Assistant Secretary, Communication Workers Union

Date: 16th January 2020

20LTB029

 



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