SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
DUBLIN AIRPORT AUTHORITY
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Ms Connolly
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
This dispute concerns a request for regrading from the Union on behlaf of five Dublin Airport Authority employee's employed as Car Park Coordinators to be regarded from Operative B Grade to Clerical Admin Scale or the Operative D Grade. This dispute could not be resolved at local level and was the subject of a Conciliation Conference under the auspices of the Workplace Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 9th June, 2017, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 26th July, 2017.
1 The role of Car Park Coordinator has morphed into one of greater responsibility.
2 Since the phasing out of Supervisor roles in 2011/12 the five employees in question have inherited much of the responsibilities previously allocated to the Supervisor role.
3When compared with employees on the Clerical Admin scale, the Union believes the role performed by the Car Park Coordinators contains higher levels of responsibility.
1 The Company have examined the role of Car Park Coordinators and believe the role has not changed significantly and the current salary is commensurate with the required level of duties.
2 The Company have stated any salary increases may have serious implications across the organisation.
3 The Company are currently in negotiations with the Union that could see a new Pay and Reward system introduced.
The issue before the Court concerns the Unions claim on behalf of five Car Park Coordinators for regrading from Operative B Grade to Clerical Administration Scale or to Operative D Grade. The Union submitted that the Claimants took on additional responsibilities when the Car Park Supervisors Grade was phased out following an agreement in November 2011.
The Union stated that this was a long running pay claim and held that the Claimants should be compared to other grades within the organisation who carry out similar roles.
Management rejected the claim and submitted that the Claimant’s role has not changed significantly since it was first established and denied that it could be comparable to either the Clerical Administration Grade or to Operative D Grade. In accordance with the terms of its collective agreement in place at the time with the Union, the “Cost Recovery Agreement 2010” (CRP), the Company engaged in an evaluation exercise to size the role in line with market rates. This exercise demonstrated that the role was in line with relevant market rates and accordingly did not warrant an uplift. Management contended that this claim had the potential to have significant knock on effects within the organisation. It suggested that the claim should be dealt with in the context of the Union’s most recent pay claim which seeks a pay increases and further payments for additional productivity “on a section by section basis”.
The Court notes that the agreed CRP method of evaluating jobs applies to new entrants only and makes comparisons to similar jobs in the market and market rates. There is no agreed methodology for evaluating internal roles in order to deal with claims such as that before the Court.
It is not the function of the Court to evaluate roles within an organisation. Rather the Court's function is to consider if the methodology used to evaluate roles is reasonable and conducted in an appropriate manner.
On that basis, in the absence of an agreed job evaluation methodology for comparison of internal roles, the Court is not in a position to concede the claim. In the event that such a methodology is agreed between the parties, the claim can be assessed in accordance with that agreement and if there is a successful outcome for the Claimants in this case, then in such circumstances the Court recommends that as the claim was made on 14thJanuary 2014 it should have retrospective effect to that date.
The Court so Recommends.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
31 July 17Deputy Chairman
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to John Deegan, Court Secretary.