Unions- back to 1979?

#2
jagman said:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/politics/article6878740.ece

The leaders of the CWU thinks he is more powerful than Scargill was back in the day.
It seems the UK is destined to go down the pan and its nobodies fault but our own.
Why do you think that the union is at fault here? From your link, the union is asking for independent arbitration. That hardly sounds like being mega-militant.
 
#4
If you read further Billy Hayes also says he is in a stronger position than Scargill was in 1984 and boasts about how strong the CWU position is.
He makes no mention of this dipute already costing the Royal Mail one of thier biggest customers (Amazon)
In the current financial climate where huge firms are struggling for survival this Union is taking industrial action, the consequences are almost inevitable and being completely ignored by the union

The whole world knows that the Roayal Mail must change to survive, except Mr Hayes and the CWU of course.
 
#5
One of the main problems with the unions is that once they get elected by their membership they are on the gravy train and refuse to get off.

RM and the members of the CWU are in a very dangerous position that if they don't get the terms and conditions sorted out soon then RM will go to the wall and with the country nearly bankrupt as it is there is no money to save them.
 
#6
jagman said:
If you read further Billy Hayes also says he is in a stronger position than Scargill was in 1984 and boasts about how strong the CWU position is.
He makes no mention of this dipute already costing the Royal Mail one of thier biggest customers (Amazon)
In the current financial climate where huge firms are struggling for survival this Union is taking industrial action, the consequences are almost inevitable and being completely ignored by the union

The whole world knows that the Roayal Mail must change to survive, except Mr Hayes and the CWU of course.
The way I read it, he is claiming to be in a stronger position than Scargill because he has balloted and got the backing of his membership and the government cannot stockpile mail to weaken strike action. That is not an unreasonable opinion.

The fact that the union wants indepenent arbitration and the management do not makes me think that it is not the union that is being unreasonable.

The Royal Mail may have to make changes, I don't know. I do think that the Royal Mail has been shafted by government though. IMO, it should be run as a service rather than just maximising profit.
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
As I understand it, Royal Mail suffers the same age-old restrictive working practices that the unions all like to bring about, and that makes the whole of Royal Mail completely uncompetitive. When the protection from competition that the Royal Mail currently enjoys finally disappears, then it will be the end of the company. The competition will eat them alive.

The only reason why the Royal Mail is still a bastion of sh!te working practices in this day and age is because it was still nationalised until recently, and than meant, protected from the big wide world in terms of its costs - they were passed on to the tax-payer.

If the union thinks it can a: make their jobs safe by continuing with the Union's imposed working practices, or b: by p!ssing off all the letter-writers, Christmas card senders and commercial firms in country in the run-up to what's going to be a cr@p Christmas for many people, they deserve everything they get - and that's the dole queue I'm afraid.

All the competitors in the mail industry have commercial working agreements with their staff, it they seem to work, and the companies seem to run efficient operations, and they aren't sucking on the tax-payer's t!t with subsidised postage. Speaking from a commercial POV, I'll go with the firm that gets my mail and goods to the door - at the best price, and most effectively. Right now, my invoice payments are being sent 'signed for' with a tracxking code, at greater expense to my firm, just to ensure that my suppliers don't throw their teddies out of the pram during this crisis. If I had an alternative, reliable mail service, I'd be off like a shot.
 
#8
Why do you think that the union is at fault here? From your link, the union is asking for independent arbitration. That hardly sounds like being mega-militant.
I agree. I think that there is more than one agenda being played out here. It seems as though The Dark Lord Mandy is setting the conditions for offloading the Royal Mail and giving the CWU a bit of a slap at the same time, whilst the CWU want to maintain working practices from the 60s and 70s.

The commercial rivals to Royal Mail must be sitting back and laughing as this sorry state unfolds in front of them. TNT/CEVA are in a good position to step into replace parts of the Royal Mail as they are/have already been running a parallel service (admittedly this has been mainly business post up to now) for the last few years. TNT have also been picking up the slack for Royal Mail post at peak periods for the last couple of years too. In December last year I drove an HGV with red trailer and no sign writing which was full of parcels and Christmas post, straight from a TNT depot to a Royal Mail depot and then a return run of mail going the other way.

Businesses that rely on the postal service are already looking at ways to continue trading during a national postal strike (Amazon have already jumped ship) in order to minimise the effects to their business and their customers. My wifes employers spend over £200k a year with Royal Mail and they are negotiating with other carriers with a view to dropping RM completely.

Royal Mail needs to sit down and work with the union through an independent arbitrator before they lose the rest of their customers.

Seems like the beginning of the end of Royal Mail tbh.

Meanwhile, the posties will be laid off and Bill Hayes will continue to live comfortably in his 1970s timewarp.
 
#9
The Union is as only as strong as it's membership. The Union is the workforce.

At the moment I am struggling to see CWU claims. But if the management a railroading through change without staff side involvement, then I can see the CWU displeasure. After all they are looking after the welfare and job security of it's members. Who wants to be made unemployed?

On a more generalised note. If Unions didn't exist, management would have you working longer hours for less pay.
 
#10
Billy Hayes is earning, reportedly, £97K- an ordinary postie probably £22k with overtime.

I've worked as a postie- I'm now a courier and we have never been so busy on the back of this dispute.

If the rank and file can't understand whats happening then I'm sorry, but they deserve all thats coming to them.
 
#11
comedy dave said:
On a more generalised note. If Unions didn't exist, management would have you working longer hours for less pay.
No sh*t. That's how business works. A business exists to make money for its stakeholders, not to provide cushy jobs for the staff.

If a worker's time is worth more than management are paying, they will leave and get a better paid job. If they can't, they'll stay and work for whatever management chooses to pay them - because that's what their time is worth.

I fear that attitudes like that are going to leave a huge number of posties completely unemployed in the near future.
 
#12
comedy dave said:
At the moment I am struggling to see CWU claims.
There's a two page letter sent to Royal Mail detailing the union's demands on the CWU web site. (Hope they couriered the letter, you know what the post is like these days).

They want a veto on any changes that Royal Mail wants to impose and that CWU doesn't like. No business can operate like that.

They want 'increased job security', meaning no compulsory redundancies. Again, a non-starter in a grossly over manned and demarcated business like RM.

They also want a separate veto on any changes to 'HR procedures'. This means no disciplining of staff for the 'Spanish practices' that RM management has been complaining about for years. Postmen knocking off early when they've finished delivering instead of returning to the sorting office to finish their shift; blind eyes being turned to posties forging signatures on recorded delivery; dumping of mail instead of delivering it etc etc etc.

Best example of Postman Twattery that I ever saw was a postie who drove his van into the entrance of our railway station then abandoned it because his shift had finished. This blocked all vehicle access, including for emergency vehicles, to the station. The d1ckhead then proceeded to walk back the the sorting office to clock off.

They deserve everything that's going to happen to them.
 
#13
DeltaDog said:
comedy dave said:
On a more generalised note. If Unions didn't exist, management would have you working longer hours for less pay.
No sh*t. That's how business works. A business exists to make money for its stakeholders, not to provide cushy jobs for the staff.

If a worker's time is worth more than management are paying, they will leave and get a better paid job. If they can't, they'll stay and work for whatever management chooses to pay them - because that's what their time is worth.

I fear that attitudes like that are going to leave a huge number of posties completely unemployed in the near future.
Whilst I agree with the gist of your arguement and I think we've discussed this before, some companies play god with their employees lives. Also in the current crisis, there is very little scope to tell an employer to poke the job and move to a better one.

Without seeing the arguements from both sides of the dispute and I do not trust the reporting of the papers - nor whatever the company gobbit says, I feel it's a tad difficult to call a judgement. However, the union needs to be careful or there won't be a workforce to reprsent.
 
#14
Recce19 said:
Whilst I agree with the gist of your arguement and I think we've discussed this before, some companies play god with their employees lives. Also in the current crisis, there is very little scope to tell an employer to poke the job and move to a better one.

Without seeing the arguements from both sides of the dispute and I do not trust the reporting of the papers - nor whatever the company gobbit says, I feel it's a tad difficult to call a judgement. However, the union needs to be careful or there won't be a workforce to reprsent.
I agree. I'm sure there's another side to the story, and I'm sure the arguments are nowhere near as clear-cut when your family is depending on you to bring in the dough.

However, I can't see that strike action by the employees of a competitive business in the middle of a national financial crisis is going to result in anything except mass unemployment. Nobody has it particularly good at the moment, and longer hours for less pay is probably a better option than gathering behind a self-interested union who is going to get the entire workforce sacked.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#15
bristolmod said:
Billy Hayes is earning, reportedly, £97K- an ordinary postie probably £22k with overtime.

.
Don't forget no strike will cost him a penny of that money
He's as far removed from the rank and file as the management he so despises

Problem is half the union leaders are gold old fashioned dyed in wool 70's socialists
"New" Labour has for now worked for them but as predicted by Thatcher the problem with sociallisim is that sooner or later you run out of other peoples money
Labour has no money and is going to have to make cuts before the tories get in
The unions pay 80p out of every £1 Labour recives and they want there pound of flesh

Up in Leeds the binmen have been out for a month or so and South Yorkshire firemen will be out soon

It will go back to 1979 because everyone wnats something and the Goverment has nothing to give
 
#16
DeltaDog said:
Recce19 said:
Whilst I agree with the gist of your arguement and I think we've discussed this before, some companies play god with their employees lives. Also in the current crisis, there is very little scope to tell an employer to poke the job and move to a better one.

Without seeing the arguements from both sides of the dispute and I do not trust the reporting of the papers - nor whatever the company gobbit says, I feel it's a tad difficult to call a judgement. However, the union needs to be careful or there won't be a workforce to reprsent.
I agree. I'm sure there's another side to the story, and I'm sure the arguments are nowhere near as clear-cut when your family is depending on you to bring in the dough.

However, I can't see that strike action by the employees of a competitive business in the middle of a national financial crisis is going to result in anything except mass unemployment. Nobody has it particularly good at the moment, and longer hours for less pay is probably a better option than gathering behind a self-interested union who is going to get the entire workforce sacked.
Fully agree with you DD.
 
#17
DeltaDog said:
comedy dave said:
On a more generalised note. If Unions didn't exist, management would have you working longer hours for less pay.
No sh*t. That's how business works. A business exists to make money for its stakeholders, not to provide cushy jobs for the staff.

If a worker's time is worth more than management are paying, they will leave and get a better paid job. If they can't, they'll stay and work for whatever management chooses to pay them - because that's what their time is worth.
If your theory held true, then there would be no need for unions and workers could get the best deal based on their skills. However pure free market capitalism doesnt exist. Most workers, in good times or bad cannot increase their value when every other job that their skillset opens up to them is advertised as SALARY: £Competitive. Ie; no more, no less than what every other company is willing to pay them. Price fixing is not confined to ready mixed concrete pourers anymore
 
#18
the_boy_syrup said:
Up in Leeds the binmen have been out for a month or so and South Yorkshire firemen will be out soon

It will go back to 1979 because everyone wnats something and the Goverment has nothing to give
Exactly. In 1979, Sunny Jim made an exception to the cap on pay rises for the miners. Then for the lorry drivers and pretty soon everybody was on strike for an exception.

Now Gordon has saved the bankers, everybody will want their job saving via a government bailout. It's deja vu all over again! Stock up on tinned food and viagra. Looks like it might be a long, dark winter.

'New' Labour? My arrse. Looks pretty much like old Labour to me.
 
#19
DeltaDog said:
Recce19 said:
Whilst I agree with the gist of your arguement and I think we've discussed this before, some companies play god with their employees lives. Also in the current crisis, there is very little scope to tell an employer to poke the job and move to a better one.

Without seeing the arguements from both sides of the dispute and I do not trust the reporting of the papers - nor whatever the company gobbit says, I feel it's a tad difficult to call a judgement. However, the union needs to be careful or there won't be a workforce to reprsent.
I agree. I'm sure there's another side to the story, and I'm sure the arguments are nowhere near as clear-cut when your family is depending on you to bring in the dough.

However, I can't see that strike action by the employees of a competitive business in the middle of a national financial crisis is going to result in anything except mass unemployment. Nobody has it particularly good at the moment, and longer hours for less pay is probably a better option than gathering behind a self-interested union who is going to get the entire workforce sacked.
That is as likely to apply to a lot of the managers along with the general workforce. The whole situation looks weird to me. Why wont the management go to and independent arbitrator? Why did the workforce vote by aprox. 3-1 to strike in these precarious times? I doubt that they want to lose their jobs.

I would not be surprised if there was much more to this than we are being told. Any posties on here that can fill in more details?
 
#20
It may seem to many that asking for independent arbitration is not unreasonable and, on the surface it may not be. However, if every time management want to make a decision they have to go to arbitration then they are not in control of the company and not placed to steer the ship.
It would appear that the Unions are fighting to preserve out-dated working practices that are wasteful in terms of human resources.
The Unions need to be more aware of the effect their action has on the population at large, particularly the business sector (more commonly and collectively known as 'the customer'). Because of this strike I have finely bitten the bullet and forked out on Adobe Creative Suite, I had often fancied it for making flyers etc, but now I put all my business correspondence in PDF format, that is all my letters, purchase orders, sales orders, statements, invoices and remittance are converted to PDF and sent via email. I no longer post cheques to pay my suppliers I send them money by BACS (costs £0.30p per transaction as opposed to £0.56p per cheque), I also request and incentivise my account customers to pay me by BACS. I now employ 2 youths to go around the city distributing my flyers to my target customers, for some reason I get a far greater response from hand delivered flyers and I have cut my stamp bill from £275 a month down to £18! The cost of hand delivery comes to £40 a week so I am quids in! Christmas is a very busy time for me, I need to make enough to carry me through the slacker months at the beginning of the year, I can't afford to lose any business or revenue and I will use alternative means where I can, I may never go back to RM again, how many more are there like me out there? The Unions choose the Christmas period because they know it'll cause the maximum disruption because the management are more likely to accede to their demands rather than lose custom. A pity the Unions don't worry as much about the customer because strike at Christmas and there wont be many old ladies knitting you socks to keep you warm this winter posties! Alienate your customers they will find alternatives and you may never be able to entice them back, what price job preservation then? Scargill killed the mines by neglect, he even prevented the engineers from getting in to keep them workable, how many thousands of jobs did his actions cost?
 

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