ASU representatives including your ASU Delegates from Brisbane, Melbourne and Hobart met with Qantas management in Sydney on 1 July to receive an update on the call centre consolidation.
Qantas gave the union an update on the EOI process and other staff related matters. This update included:
Advise on how many completed EOI’s had been received so far
Plans for the site visits to Hobart
Advice that Qantas Superannuation briefings would be organised in the coming weeks
Training, support & outplacement services
Q&A’s still confusing
Qantas have issued an updated Frequently Asked Questions document. Unfortunately this has led to some further confusion over the status of EOI’s. To clarify the EOI’s close on the 1st August but do not become binding on this date. Staff are able to change their preferences and accordingly the EOI’s remain non-binding in nature.
Of course once redundancies are triggered or transfer/redeployment offers are made and employment contracts entered into this changes. We have asked Qantas to amend the FAQ to clarify this for all staff.
Relocation Package & Guidelines
Qantas has improved the relocation package for those staff transferring to Hobart or for staff who transfer to Brisbane from Melbourne after representations from the ASU. These changes are in the area of costs associated with the sale & purchase of your home, pre-transfer and post offer acceptance visits and spousal assistance.
The package presented by Qantas still did not match relocation arrangements for engineering staff transferring to Brisbane. The ASU has raised a number of additional matters associated with the relocation package and asked Qantas to re-consider their position.
Conditions in Hobart
The ASU has raised a number of issues associated with work arrangements for anyone transferring to Hobart. Language allowance will continue be paid to anyone using foreign language skills as per our EBA.
The union has asked again for clarification on how premium work will be undertaken in Hobart. We have also asked for details about how many positions are required at each classification level. These issues will continue to be pursued by the union.
Qantas has also advised that they are commencing to recruit a new school in Hobart. They have assured the ASU that this will not impact on the number of positions available in Hobart. They have stated that anyone wishing to move from Brisbane or Melbourne will be accepted in Hobart.
Transfers to Brisbane from Melbourne
Given that Melbourne is scheduled to close in June 2015 and Brisbane in June 2016, the ASU has sought a commitment that staff can apply to transfer to Brisbane from Melbourne. Qantas have agreed to this in principle but have stipulated that there would need to be work available and/or suitable job swaps. ie: someone may wish to leave Brisbane early on redundancy therefore allowing someone from Melbourne to transfer.
Qantas have also confirmed that the same relocation package of assistance would be available for staff transferring between Melbourne & Brisbane. Any staff member wishing to access this option should add this detail to their EOI application.
Relocation Assistance outside of Telephone Sales
Anyone who is successful in securing a redeployment to another Port outside of Telephone Sales will be provided with a relocation package as per company policy. The package will not be as generous as the package for staff transferring to another Telephone Sales centre. Qantas will be providing these details soon.
Redeployment to other Qantas subsidiaries
Whilst there are many legal issues associated with transfers between Qantas subsidiaries, including whether redundancy applies, what happens to accrued entitlements, and staff travel to name a few, both the ASU and Qantas are prepared to explore these issues. There will be further discussions on this important issue.
The ASU has raised a number of staff travel questions including the number of beneficiary changes allowed and LSL trips. Qantas have agreed to look at these issues and in particular clarify the rules around adding family members and extending the life of LSL trips.
The ASU will be holding members meetings in each location in July before EOI’s close. Make sure you attend a meeting to get the most up to date information.
The next meeting between the ASU & Qantas will be on 8 August when Qantas will give the union an update on the outcome of EOI’s and will present more information on what training & support will be made available to Telephone Sales staff.