Victoria’s general staff ready to reject pay model

Posted By TEU on Apr 14, 2016 |

Tertiary Update Vol 19 No 12

People working at Victoria University are preparing to resist a pay system that removes pay steps and makes it harder for parents to spend time with their children.

About eighty general staff at the university, including many non-union members, marked the union’s general staff day last week by meeting to discuss the university’s proposal for a new pay system.

The university’s plan extends ordinary working hours for general staff to include Sunday and longer ranges of ordinary hours – 6am to 10.30 pm. It replaces salary steps for many staff with opaque remuneration bands for many staff, it makes parental leave less flexible for employees with dependents and removes provisions for preferential re-entry after absences due to childcare duties.

Victoria University says it will place all non-union members on the new pay system. It also plans to raise it during the upcoming employment negotiations with union members.

TEU organiser Nicki Wilford says TEU members will resist the proposal at those negotiations.

“We plan to stop the proposal, which is why people who were not part of the union are joining us in large numbers.”

Wilford says TEU will be negotiating for a fair pay system that lets people know why they are paid what they are and what they need to do to progress.

“A fair pay model does not allow for bias or arbitrary decisions by managers. It gives professional staff yearly steps through a pay scale that is specific to the job they do.”

TEU members at other institutions around the country also held general, allied or professional staff day events including at the University of Auckland, NorthTec, AUT and Otago University. Many of these events focused on TEU’s Pay Well, Pay Fairly campaign.

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. $1000 for Weltec’s TEU members
  2. Vic University plans to privatise foundation studies
  3. Women urged to continue campaign for equal pay
  4. Joyce says migration, not education, will close IT skills gap

Other news

Academics may soon share offices and hot-desk as the University of Canterbury puts the squeeze on space. TEU warns students might suffer, as academics would be less accessible and might spend more time working from home – Stuff

“Pretty damned hopeless.” That’s the Finance Minister’s description of some Kiwi workers he made to a Federated Farmers meeting — and he’s standing by it – Newshub

While much of the rest of the public sector has moved beyond the ‘outputs’ management of the 1980s and 1990s, universities are increasingly siloed and held back from innovation by the PBRF.  Systems which focus excessively on measures end up with ‘goal displacement’ – where the measures become the goals  –  Richard Norman, School of Management, Victoria University of Wellington


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