Future direction of Royal Mail agreed by Union members

By Chris Dawson February 4, 2021 - 10:30 am

Royal Mail say that they are pleased that members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) have voted overwhelmingly in favour of the framework agreement on the strategy and future direction of Royal Mail, operational change, pay and job security. 91.5% of eligible CWU members voted in favour of the agreement.

Having an agreement on the future direction of Royal Mail will come as a massive relief to both ecommerce merchants who rely on their service and equally by consumers, who normally at this time of year wouldn’t care if strikes happened but in lock down need their deliveries more than ever before.

Typically we’ve seen the CWU aiming to strike in the run up to Christmas specifically because it is the only time of year consumers care and causes maximum disruption to Royal Mail, but many months ago they withdrew all threats of strike action and called for the postal service to be considered an essential part of the national response to the pandemic.

One of the triggers to the most recent dispute was the accusation that as CEO, Rico Back tore up the previous agreement. Now with Simon Thompson as the new CEO and a new agreement on the future direction of Royal Mail we can (cross fingers) look forward to a period of peace and cooperation between the national postal service and their union colleagues.

On 22 December 2020 the Company announced details of the framework agreement reached with the CWU. The agreement covers:

  • Focus on swifter change
  • The agreement will allow Royal Mail to make more frequent revisions to the network and introduce the use of technology to improve both customer service and efficiency. Deployment of revisions and realignment activity is planned for all operational areas by the end of October 2021, with annual revisions thereafter. The introduction of technology will replace handwritten manual sign‐in / sign‐out and provide more meaningful data to enable a more efficient service to customers. There will also be a revised and quicker dispute resolution process to enable agreement on change to happen more quickly, and a process to trial and deploy new ways of working and technology more swiftly.

  • Strategy and future direction of Royal Mail
  • A review of the operational network will conclude by April 2021 to support and build on proposals for the parcel network, maintain an efficient letters operation and prioritise investment for further expansion. This will include how Royal Mail operate new parcel hubs and introduce dedicated van delivery duties for parcels, as well as exploring the opportunity for more frequent deliveries throughout the week.

  • Pay and job security
  • Royal Mail are committed to remaining the best employer in our industry. The agreement includes the following two year pay deal for CWU colleagues:

    • 2.7% pay increase effective from April 2020; and
    • A further pay increase of 1% with effect from April 2021; and
    • The second hour of the shorter working week to be implemented at the point that the 2021 programme of revision activity is deployed in a function/unit and no later than the end of October 2021.

The union recommended that members vote in favour of the agreement during the ballot.

Royal Mail are now working with CWU to implement the changes we need, in order to capitalise on the significant growth they have seen in parcels so far this year.

  • Terence Devlin
    4 weeks ago

    How does electronic clocking in and out effect customer efficiency. . That’s a belter that one ha,ha,ha

  • Royal Mail need to lobby the government where “developing nations” (this includes China !) pay only pence for postage , they can make more money and level the playing field for us UK online sellers

  • mark
    4 weeks ago

    Right all sorted now maybe they actually deliver the parcels and on time instead of losing them or delivering late.

    They are failing drastically.
    If someone stepped in and made them refund at least the shipping immediately tracking shows it past the 15 working days (joke) they would see refunds of tens of thousands every day and do something about it.
    Instead you have to fill in forms all about the item and its cost before you get a bean, meaning many just cant be bothered.

    But the postage should be immediate as long as it shows as not delivered they cannot argue. Then deal with the rest.

    Its an un answerable business.

  • SAM
    3 weeks ago

    Maybe they could actually SCAN the mail.
    All you ever get it them trying to sell you their overpriced tracked service which they do not scan either BTW.
    The only company I know using it in our sector is on the verge of going bust and customers are not willing to pay for it.
    Clearly communicate with marketplaces WHO like eBay stick their heads in the sand and ignore the actual delays which are still happening.
    It is time OFCom got involved it is pretty shocking they can take your money and goods proceed to lose them and you get ZERO compensation and lip service. They actually tell you it is YOUR fault for using their standard services it really is no longer acceptable in this day and age.

  • @mark “But the postage should be immediate as long as it shows as not delivered they cannot argue. Then deal with the rest.” – good idea!

  • Victor
    3 weeks ago

    Royal mail
    Rely on their institutional status
    They have hid behind small print terms and conditions for years
    What they offer as customer service is in reality a protective barrier

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