Rivus Group – BT Contract to End
The union have been advised the contract that Rivus Group (formally BT Fleet) has with BT is to expire at the end of September. Rivus said that agreement could not be reached on what BT and its new provider Holmans, wished to contract to Rivus. There will be no BT work carried out by Rivus from 30th September 2023.
Rivus have advised the union that the terms offered were not commercially viable and from what we know, could have resulted in a serious threat to the Ts & Cs of our Rivus members.
The union is of course extremely disappointed that agreement could not be reached but have been advised by Rivus that they are confident of filling the capacity that BT will leave behind. They have also advised us that they will continue to recruit into current vacancies and investment will continue in terms of training, warranty and equipment.
As branches will know, BT has embarked on a cost-cutting exercise that in some places borders on being self-destructive and branches will be surprised to learn that the new provider has no garage network of its own. It relies on spare garage capacity in the industry to fulfil its contracts, so only time will tell if they can fulfil their contractual commitments to BT let alone stand it up by the end of September. We can only assume that they are confident of doing so.
Rivus has advised the union that the lease with BT that they have on the Rivus garages is to 2030 and separate from the service contract and Rivus has no intention of relinquishing it because they intend to fill the freed-up capacity with new work which they advise they are already in discussions.
Rivus have also said that BT has not criticised the level or quality of the service that Rivus has provided. This is reflected in the fact that they wanted to continue to use Rivus through their new supplier, on service, maintenance and repair (SMR) work. The contract on offer however was not commercially viable.
The 2023 Pay negotiations with Rivus will continue and this announcement will have no impact on the union’s approach to these negotiations and we are advised that Rivus is of the same view.
Rivus have always said that their aim was not to rely in one major contract to sustain its future and believed that in the long term such an approach was not sustainable. Their aim now is to continue to seek work in the large corporate and the public sector markets as they do now, but also to ensure that they grow in diverse and sustainable way. The recent winning of the Metropolitan Police contract is evidence of this approach and the freeing-up of garage capacity will they say, enable to them to continue with their diverse growth strategy.
The CWU is under no illusions; Rivus is going to face a challenging time over the next few months but their approach to the ending of the BT contract, could have been a lot different and a greater and immediate threat to our members.
Further LTBs will be circulated in due course between now and September.
LTB 085/23 – Rivus Group – BT Contract to end
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