Global Telesales

Welcome to the section of our website which is dedicated exclusively to serving the interests of our members in Global Telesales. This section is a resource designed to provide you with useful information about your employment rights, membership benefits, and regular updates on issues which the CWU is pursuing on your behalf.

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GTS Update - June 2011

Non-union telesales firm told to pay compensation over salary bands

The Labour Court has recommended that compensation of €2,000 should be paid to some workers at Global Telesales Ltd – part of the Deutsche Lufthansa group.

The workers involved had lost potential future earnings as a result of salary band restructuring. The case is the second dispute in recent weeks that the Communications Workers Union (CWU) has taken to the Labour Court under the 2004 Industrial Relations Act.

Last week, IRN reported on a case involving Dell Direct and the CWU, in which the Labour Court, taking its line from the Supreme Court ruling in ‘Ryanair’, decided that a group of workers who claimed they were denied representation, could not “resile” from what, the Court decided, is a de facto ‘collective body’. (See IRN 23/11)

In this case, however, there was no issue over whether a trade dispute existed between parties. According to the Court, “both sides agreed that the matter was properly before the Court pursuant to Section 2 of the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2001 as amended”. The Court was thus “empowered to hear and deal with the dispute pursuant to Section 5 of the Act”.

The dispute centred on a new pay and reward system, which was introduced in 2007 as part of cost saving measures brought in to address trading difficulties.

As part of the changes, the company reassigned salary band II staff to the former salary band I (now known as salary band A). The maximum point was reduced from €13.08 to €11.25 per hour. Workers who were earning in excess of €11.25 per hour at that time were red-circled on their current rate. Workers below €11.25 per hour were capped at that level.

The union claimed the new salary scales had a detrimental effect on the income of some workers, namely those on former salary band II, who had not yet reached the maximum of the scale. The union also maintained that this category of workers had “a legitimate expectation” that they would, over time, reach the maximum of salary band II and that this opportunity had now been denied to them.

The company contended that the effect of the reduction in salary potential for some former salary band II workers was offset by the introduction of a performance bonus scheme. This scheme provided all affected staff with the opportunity to earn significantly increased levels of income, over and above the maximum of the former band II.

The Court found that as a result of the salary restructuring, some workers on the former salary band II were “uniquely disadvantaged”. The workers affected “had a reasonable expectation that they would, subject to performance reviews, progress over time to the maximum point of the Salary Band”.

However, the Court noted that “no individual actually lost money but rather lost potential earnings into the future”. Furthermore, “almost all of the Workers affected have in fact earned more money under the new pay structures than they would have earned under the discontinued structures albeit subject to the achievement of higher and different performance standards”.

The Court recommended compensation of €2,000 to those salary band II staff who had been earning less than the maximum point of the scale in November 2007.

The company should also “examine the actual pay outcomes for the staff affected over the years since 2007 and put in place an appropriate training and support program to assist those affected maximise their earnings levels through the performance related payment system”, the Court recommended. (LCR20080 – Brendan Hayes, deputy chairman)

- Article by Roisin Farrelly, IRN

GTS Update - March 2011

The Communications Workers' Union recently attended the Labour Court to discuss the issue of salary bands which were introduced at Global Telesales in 2007. The introduction of these salary bands had a detrimental effect on the income of some of our members. The Company has until now refused to discuss this issue with the Union and subsequently we sought the assistance of the Labour Relations Commission (LRC) to resolve the issue. As no agreement was reached the issue was referred to the Labour Court, after some delays the case was heard last Friday 25th February 2010. We will inform our members as soon as we have a decision.

We are seeking to arrange a meeting for our members at Global Telesales. We are aware that many people at Global Telesales work various shifts and we wish to ensure that as many members who wish to attend the meeting are in a position to do so. We are seeking suggestions for dates, times and venues which are suitable for our members to attend. Please forward any ideas that you may have regarding the availability of members and any suggested venues for our members’ meeting.

In the meantime I would ask that you invite your colleagues to join the Union and encourage them to attend our upcoming members’ meeting.