On 21 August 2014, the ASU National Negotiating team met with StarTrack management for further discussions about the new Enterprise Agreement. These discussions were very productive and we have agreed that the AAE Retail Agreement should form the basis of the new Agreement.
AAE Retail or the Clerks Award
There has been some difference in opinion about what should be the starting point for the new Agreement. The ASU has argued that the new Agreement should be based on the AAE Retail Agreement which has higher pay and conditions. Startrack Management have argued it should be the Clerks Award.
Startrack have now agreed that the AAE Retail Agreement should be the starting point. This is a positive step. It will ensure the conditions of people employed on the AAE Retail Agreement will be maintained and lift the conditions of people currently employed on the Clerks Award.
Startrack have indicated that as a result of their agreement to use the AAE Retail Agreement, they will withdraw a number of their claims. They have committed to provide an updated log of claims at the next meeting.
Classification and pay levels
Management has indicated that they would like to review the classification structure to improve clarity about the skills and duties required at each level. They have also indicated that they would like to introduce a ‘new starter’ rate into the classification structure that would provide for a lower training rate for a limited period (for example six months). Management will put a more detailed proposal to us about this at the next meeting.
The ASU has responded that we are open to discussions about clarifying the classification structure but that any pay increase will need to be backdated to 1 January 2014, to reflect that those staff employed on the existing Agreements have not received a pay increase this year. We will consider Management’s ‘new starter’ rate once we have received a detailed proposal.
Startrack respond to ASU claims
At this meeting, Management responded to a number of the ASU claims:
Claim No. 1 – An EA be formulated that reflects the best terms and conditions offered under the AAE Enterprise Agreement, AAE Individual contracts and Startrack individual contracts.
Management agree to use the AAE Retail Agreement as the template for the new Agreement. The ASU has identified 3 areas where the Clerks Award or Startrack policy is better than the AAE Retail Agreement; casual loading, part time overtime provisions and maternity leave. We have proposed clauses to improve the Agreement, including lifting casual loading to 25% and increasing maternity leave to 14 weeks. Management will respond to these clauses at a future meeting.
Claim No. 5 – Improve rostering, including equitable allocation of days off, overtime, public holidays and penalty shifts, an increase to rostering notice and maintain the ability to shift swap.
We had very productive discussions about rostering.
Management have agreed to increase the rostering notice where they can. They have identified that they can provide three month notice for 58% of shifts, but need to retain some flexibility with the remaining 42% of shifts. The remaining 42% of shifts will continue to receive one month notice of rosters. This is a positive development that will give the majority of the workforce more certainty about when they will be working.
Management also explained the current process for allocation of overtime. They say that overtime is allocated first to staff who have worked less overtime, to ensure it is spread fairly across the workforce. If you think you have been treated unfairly in overtime allocation, please get in contact with your local ASU organiser.
Claim No. 7 – Improve training, including introduction of a buddy training allowance
Management are giving further consideration to the ASU’s proposal to introduce a $20 allowance for employees who are ‘buddied’ with new employees to provide on the job training.
Claim No. 8 – Improve access to annual leave, including fair distribution of leave and consultation around leave blackout periods
The ASU has proposed to include the following words at the beginning of the annual leave clause: Annual leave will be allocated amongst staff fairly and equitably, subject to operational requirements. Management will respond to this at the next meeting. They will also propose wording for a side letter that will commit the company to consultation in the event they change the leave blackout period.
Claim No. 9 – Introduce provisions to minimize the use of contractors
The ASU has proposed a clause that would require the company to pay the same rates to contractors as it pays its own employees. This is designed to act as a disincentive to the company contracting our jobs that could be performed by a Startrack employee.
Claim No. 11 – Ensure fairness and transparency in internal promotions, including introduction of an appeals process
Management has provided an explanation of how the current internal promotion process works. They have agreed to provide a side letter to the ASU that confirms this process, so the ASU may enforce the process in individual cases in the future.
Claim No. 12 – Ensure all employees have access to safe and secure parking
This issue was raised by members in Melbourne. At this meeting, Management provided an update on the new Melbourne car park that will address this issue. The company has access to the block next door. They are currently waiting for bitumen to be put down. Once this is occurred it will be accessible to staff as a car park.
The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for the 1st of September at the ASU offices.
How do we get a better deal
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