BBC workers, members of Unite, the country’s largest union, are being recommended to vote in favour of what is being described as ‘a modern set of terms and conditions for BBC employees’.
Unite is recommending to its BBC members a new agreement covering a three-year pay deal, and terms and conditions; the result of joint working between management and the three unions - Unite, BECTU and the NUJ.
The Unite ballot has to be coordinated with the other unions, but it is expected later this month with the result in early June.
Unite lead officer for the BBC Mike Eatwell said “The proposed agreement is a major revision of what currently exists and goes a long way to creating a modern set of terms and conditions for BBC employees, which, we believe, has never before been experienced to such a degree at the BBC.
“For nearly two years, we have been analysing and discussing the policies, practices, and terms of the BBC to bring them in line with progressive 21st century working practices.
“Modern media companies are 24/7 operations and employ a range of skills that operate in a variety of working conditions.
“The agreement is wide ranging, flexible and innovative. Compromise has been made by both sides so what we have is a good set of conditions which is affordable to the organisation.
“Workplace union reps are often falsely and wrongly derided as being obstacles to change, but here at the BBC they have been applauded by management at getting the most difficult aspects of change over the line, while always defending their members’ interests.
“BBC’s Unite members will now have their say and we are satisfied sufficiently with the outcome to recommend the agreement.”
The proposed agreement contains major improvements to contracts, sick pay, London ‘weighting’ and parental leave. In addition, there are significant new benefits regarding night working and weekend working, and a radically different approach to the scheduling of workers on shift working that has been long overdue.
On pay, the agreement covers the period August 2017 to July 2020 with annual increases of two per cent, two per cent and 2.5 per cent (or in line with the increase in the licence fee, if higher).
There are also additional increases connected to pay progression for those members on anomalous rates and a new transparent pay structure revealing where employees stand in relation to the BBC jobs’ structure.
A number of policies have also been revised as a result of joint union-management dialogue.
Unite members are, mainly, technicians working in studios or outside broadcasts.
Notes to editors:
For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on: 020 3371 2065
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.