We write to our members employed in the three shared services, Careers, Housing and the University’s Computer Centre, re their proposed amalgamation into a new company, CoSector.
The two recognised unions (unison and UCU) have been pressing management for more clarity as to the proposed arrangements.
After a meeting with Anthony Kemp on 23 July, we have been promised that, when CoSector is set up:
- All staff will remain employed by the University, on UoL terms and conditions. There will be no TUPE process. (However, please note what might happen in the longer term; see below)
- There will be no change to pensions – you will stay members of USS or SAUL, if you are already members of these schemes.
- There will be no redundancies – compulsory or otherwise.
- There will be no downgrading in roles.
- There will be no changes to existing job descriptions.
In the longer term ….
Anthony Kemp has stated that new terms and conditions are being drawn up (we have not seen them yet) but staff will have a ‘choice’ as to whether to stick to UoL T&Cs or opt for the new CoSector ones. Our concern is that, choice or no choice, this will create a two-tier workforce with two sets of terms of conditions. We have made our opposition to this development very clear.
We asked Anthony Kemp if new starters, or existing staff promoted to new roles, will have a choice of T&Cs offered to them or whether they will be automatically be assigned to CoSector T&Cs. There was no clear answer but he did agree that until the end of January 2016, all new starters and all promotions will join or stay on UoL T&Cs and won’t be offered a choice of new CoSector T&Cs. This was a concession on his part – we will strive to make sure it is not just a temporary one.
We realise that this is an unsettling time for staff and the lack of timely and clear updates have not helped. There are still many questions unanswered. If you have concerns then please let us know. There will be a further meetings with management to negotiate these issues in greater detail. We will keep you posted with further updates as and when we have them. Union reps will also be walking around the various services over the coming weeks so you will have an opportunity to ask us questions/raise concerns face-to-face. We’ll let you know.
Finally, please encourage your colleagues who are not members of either unison or UCU to join. The stronger we are, the more influence we will all have to shape the future of our workplaces. Please feel free to pass this news onto any concerned colleagues and look out for further updates.