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Ok this is one that affects me directly so guidance is needed.

 

I work for a large retailer and as part of my job they can change my shifts / hours to "suit the needs of the company". Because of this my shifts have been changed on 3 occasions causing major upheaval and stress within the family as we try to juggle time.

 

I originally started on days then was moved to nights then twilight then back to nights all to suit the needs of the company. However now they have decided that they are changing the way replenishment is done ( Not my roll ) however this means the closure of the night shift which I am on ( Not through choice ).

 

I have been reliably informed that the roll I am doing is not being made redundant but is being moved to an earlier twilight shift which I am happy to move to.

 

But now I am being told that as the roll is moving to twilight I will have to re apply for my own job ( To make it fair to others? ) what about fairness to me? A job I have done for 8 years I think they are doing this in order to force redundancies of over staff and possibly as a way to change my contract to remove my Sunday premium which makes up my wage.

 

My argument against having to re apply is that the company have used the " needs of the business" speal to change my shifts on 3 previous occasions and I was never required to re apply but now they want to change the goal posts to push though their agenda which could ultimatum lead to my redundancy cos as a union rep I am sure I would be in the firing line as the new CEO Is anti union.

 

I am getting ready to address the current situation through the consultation process but would like some guidance on recourse, questions to support my current concerns and ultimately highlight any areas to take further should the worse scenario play out.

 

At 50 I know if I end up out of work I will probably never work again. I have worked almost continually since leaving school.and cant see myself unemployed.

 

Advice please.

 

Cheers Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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Hello Bill.

 

You've started a couple of threads recently. Does this relate to either of them please?

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Sounds like Every Little Helps!

 

First of all, the role is not redundant, as replenishment still needs to be carried out, so it is a case of 'What does your contract say'?

 

Is your contract specific around working hours, or is it worded in such a way that you will be required to work X hours per week with shifts around the needs of the business and that changes will be notified in reasonable time?

 

The basic premise is that a contract is a contract, even where the terms have been varied by custom and practice and that an employer seeking to change this can only do so by agreement. You can either accept the changes, or negotiate around sticking points, or refuse the new terms. Ultimately however the employer can force a change by terminating your existing contract and offering you a new one based on the new working pattern. Whilst this could be construed as constructive dismissal - a breach of contract so severe that you are unable to continue - as the employer has mitigated any loss by offering new terms, any award by a Tribunal would be limited, since damages can only reflect direct loss as a consequence of the breach.

 

Regarding the loss of premiums, a similar situation arises. The employer would be breaching your contract, but as is customary would almost certainly offer some form of buyout in compensation which again, mitigates any loss and reduces the impact of any possible legal action by the employee. A complicating factor in such a situation is the involvement of trade union collective agreements.

 

So, no real answer to your situation, but the advice would be to arm yourself with genuine reasons why a change of shift would cause you problems - childcare for children under 17? Care for a dependant relative? Transport issues? It will not stop the employer making the change, for there is a genuine and clear business need, nor will it make your role redundant, but it may give you some room for negotiation around the hours that you will have to work. Unfortunately simply refusing the changes could ultimately just result in putting yourself out of work or finding that you are forced to accept a new contract with loss of accrued service.

 

Also, make sure that you keep the union involved at every stage if you are a member.

(Edit - apologies - just noted that you are a Rep yourself!)


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Is there a redundancy "pool" and if so, who is in it/ by what criteria?


Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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Hi to answer the first question whilst the post links with other previous ones they where related to other colleagues this one is specific to my current position.

 

To answer the Third question the company have not specified a pool but the options given are move to a vacancies in store if one is available move to another store where a vacancy is available or compulsory redundancy. I have spoken with ACAS as our union have in my opinion failed it's members by forming an agreement with the company to withhold the details of the companys plans making it impossible for the reps to effectively support and guide members. When mentioning Constructive dismissal they stated that rather than constructive dismissal from the information I have given them I could possibly have grounds for unfair dismissal should my role be denied to me. Which leads me to the second point made.

 

As I work in a big company my title is general assistant which covers all eventualities however I joined the company as a merchandiser and have done only this roal for the past 8 years with no concerns raised about my abilities to do the job in fact the company moved me to another role for two weeks and admitted they had acted incorrectly as others struggled to do the job right.

 

My issue isnt the company changing the shifts / tasks to suit the business which is their mantra when moving people round the business but the fact that when they did it in the past I was never required to re apply for the job as the job was just moving however they are changing the goal posts now to meet a new agenda which Iis totally unfair as the role is not redundant it seems that the criteria could be used to dismiss the over staffing or as a way to introduce a new contract stripping me of any other premiums I currently would be entitled to.

 

As the new CEO is renound for hating the unions the fact that one criteria mentioned was if your a union rep which was recorded in my meetings minutes that has raised alarm bells for the ACAS adviser I spoke to.

 

So all I am asking for at this moment is ideas to take to my next meeting which will strengthen my position.

 

It may seem selfish but I am fighting for my own job at the moment so am concentrating on my needs.

 

Cheers Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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I was hoping someone could suggest ways forwards maybe a letter of grievance with the grounds for grievance?

 

As I see it even though my contract has me down as general assistant, I was told that as I have done the same role for years this in itself forms the contract?

 

Also the company have a process of moving you round the business right hours right place and have used this for changing my shifts and times previously and as the roll is only being moved to a new time surely this same system should be applied again as it is what makes up the policy?

 

I spoke with the manager rep today who also highlighted that if we are being required to re apply for our posts then a manager was assigned to a post that really should have allowed other displaced managers to apply for to so there seems to be no consistency in the companies policies and processes with regards to this scenario?

 

Any ideas?

 

Cheers Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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Hello Bill.

 

I hope you'll have other replies, but if you're a union rep, can't the union help you?

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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The union made an agreement with the company not to let the union reps know what they had planned which as I see it goes against what I and our members would expect.

 

The union have done nothing to support reps or members up to now effectively hanging us out to dry, and have not had the decency to come forwards and explain their actions which has caused a lot of anger from members but as members fear loosing redundancy pay by alerting the wider public of this disgusting behavior no one is speaking out as of yet.

 

So understandably my trust in the company and the union is now none existent and although a rep in store who is not affected by the changes is feeding me information his attitude as I am a rep is ( It's not all about me there are other members affected ) He has totally missed the point that as my roll is at risk and he wont be paying my mortgage it is all about me and my family at this moment so as you can see this is why even if the advice may not be what I want to hear, I am looking for other support and guidance from you good people.

 

Regards Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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How many people affected? If more thn 11 (I think) then they ahve to give a minimum notice of the proposals under a consultation exercise under law so saying there is an agreement with the union is very suspect.

As for the mechanisms, well if a number of posts are to be combined then the reapplying for the new jobs syatem is the norm. There will be subtle changes in the job descriptions to ensure that no-one is actually applying for their own old job but the procedure is fairly common.

No-one will lose redundancy pay but I expect the company will offer an enhanced package to get people to volunteer to go. Severance pay when redundancy is on the cards is tax free but if peopel are redundant there is a statutory minimum payment so the company cannot withold the pay. If they claim it isnt redundancy then that is automatic unfair dismissal so they wont be doing that either.

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Hi ericsbrother thanks for taking the time to respond.

 

Following the unions inactivity and a lot of shouting on my part and I suspect the rumors that where starting I finally got the information I had been after.

 

The issue involving my roll was they had originally suggested it was moving to the new time slot however it was not made clear that the roll had been made redundant due to restructure involving a change in who had responsibility for the task which is now department specific and the title change. I accept that and have been handed a copy of what my expected final pay will be.

 

The company have realized that they have had to do some damage limitations and the whole process has now been laid out for me and other reps to see. Based on that I was able to answer most of the questions the night staff had I am resigned to the fact that I am unemployed from 11 March which is my birthday :-) however I am hoping there are other rolls that will give me the hours I need to remain.

 

If not its down the bank pay off as much of the mortgage I can then look for a new job.

 

Cheers Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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UPDATE:

 

I have spent the last two weeks supporting colleagues in consultation meetings and have seen most of the jobs night staff did go up on the board for them to re apply.

 

What has become apparent is that the jobs have been hacked to pieces where there where once 36.5 and 30 hour shifts theses have been reduced and at such times of the day that they actively discriminate against staff with family and mortgage commitments leaving vacancies untouched as the night team choose to take redundancy rather than accept the insult of scraps being thrown on the floor.

 

As I was told my roll was redundant I have asked for redeployment to the same roll at a near by store which was advertised in store ( Which I expect to get as I more than meet and infact exceed the criteria for )

 

However I have now seen on the board that my old roll has been re advertised with the old roll title which tells me that my roll was NOT redundant what has happened however is that the hours as with the other jobs have been slaughtered to such an extent that it would be UN-economic for me to even look at.

 

I have been back in contact with ACAS with the new information who have advised that if I can show that the alternative vacancy being offered is unsuitable based on my previous roll and the redeployment roll with these ones plus also given the statement that one of the criteria should more than one person go for the same roll be ( being a union rep ) which could be being used as a detriment to me being offered suitable alternatives, It would appear that i could have a good case for unfair redundancy / unfair dismissal?

 

I am wondering would it be advisable to sit on this information until I hear the outcome and the appeal any negative decision with the possibility of taking it to conciliation or tribunal.

 

And should I demand the company provide me with a job description of the new roll and my old roll where they can show how the new roll substantially differs from my old roll bearing in mind that they recon the new roll is customer focused merchandising when my old roll of general merchandiser was customer focused Hmmmmmmm.

 

Ideas please

 

Bill


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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have you spoken to your regional officer or other full time official? you pay your subs so get them involved. The union legal teams are pretty good generally so better to get them in now and make the company do things properly rather than after you are all out of the door and are then just fighting over the scraps a you put it.

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As a union rep I have to say I am disgusted with the lack of support = zero support from the regional officer and in store reps who as they where not affected couldn't give a damn.

 

I had a long meeting with the Personnel managers last night an basically laid out the facts as I saw it and put them on guard for any possible claims arising out of redundancies they where quite put back by this as I don't think they'd expected me to have done so much research they where not happy at all :-)

 

I also spoke with our PM this morning and also put her on guard.

 

This was after I had been pulled back in the office earlier in my shift to be notified that my application to move to a similar vacancy elsewhere had been successful so for now I am still in a job, the only down side is that as they already have a night rep I will have to step down :sad:

 

This has not placated me as I am determined to support every one of my colleagues and guide them till the bitter end.

 

Cheers


All information given above is purely my own opinion. Some based on personal experience. Where backed up by case files I will make that known. However, until then please take all of what I say with a pinch of salt and accept it only as a reference. :madgrin::madgrin::madgrin:

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put yourself forward for one of the honorary posts in your branch such as assistant treasurer. Not too onerous but keeps you in touch with people and generally no-one else want to do it.

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