SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
- AND -
SIPTU, UNITE, IMPACT
Chairman: Mr Foley
Employer Member: Ms Doyle
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. Pay progression and processes used to calculate pay increases.
2. The case before the Court concerns a dispute between the Employer and the group of Unions in relation to the issue of pay progression and specifically the method utilised by the Employer to determine pay increases. The dispute could not be resolved at local level between the parties and was the subject of a Conciliation Conference held under the auspices of the Workplace Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached the matter was referred to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on 12th December, 2016. The following is the Recommendation of the Court:
The Court has considered in detail the written and oral submissions of the parties.
This matter comes to the Court against the background of a collective agreement concluded in 2013 which established a framework and operational mechanisms for pay determination in the company.
The Court is aware that a ‘pay freeze’ has applied in the company for a period. The matter now before the Court relates to the operation of the agreed framework and mechanisms in respect of pay determination in 2016 following the lifting of the ‘pay freeze’ by the company.
The Court supports the proposition that collective agreements should be respected and upheld until such time as they are succeeded by fresh agreements. In this case no new agreement has been reached which alters or changes the terms of the 2013 agreement. Notwithstanding this fact the Court notes submission of the Union side setting out dissatisfaction with the operation of the 2013 agreement.
The Court therefore recommends that the parties should engage in early 2017 to review the 2013 agreement. The Court recommends that this engagement should be afforded the time required to deal adequately with issues raised by the parties to the agreement. In the meantime the 2013 agreement should continue to operate in line with its terms until an amending or replacement agreement is reached.
In relation to the specific issues before the Court the Court recommends as follows:
•That the parties should accept the proposal to apply a minimum of 10% on promotion. That proposal should have effect from 1stJanuary 2016. All promotees who have been promoted since conclusion of the 2013 agreement should benefit from the application of this provision with effect from that date or their date of promotion whichever is the later.
•That, taking account of the failure of the parties to agree the composition of the ‘basket’ of comparator companies as provided for in the 2013 agreement, the parties should apply an ‘x’ factor of 2.2% in 2016.
Acknowledging that the 2013 agreement remains in place until replaced by a successor agreement, the Court does not recommend a change to the methodology for calculation of ‘Market Range Refresh’.
The Court so recommends.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
30th December 2016______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Sharon Cahill, Court Secretary.