PostNL agrees labour deal offering more than 3% pay rise
PostNL has said it has reached a new deal in principle with its trade unions to combine the collective bargaining agreements for the mail business and PostNL Parcels. The Dutch postal operator said the combined new collective bargaining agreement will apply from April 2013 to the end of December 2014.
The agreement is based on a pay rise of 1% retroactive from April 2013, a 2.1% pay rise from January 2014, and a 0.5% pay rise will also go into effect from July 2014.
A one-time bonus of 1% of the 2013 salary will also be paid.
Although pay will increase, staff will have to contribute more to their pension funds, with contributions rising from 2% to 4% from January 2014, which PostNL said was needed ” in order to keep the pensions affordable”.
PostNL said within the deal, overtime pay for production staff working on a Saturday will be reduced from 40% to 30% from July, and this will then reduce to 20% from the end of December 2014.
Mail delivery staff and Saturday delivery staff will continue to have a separate collective bargaining agreement, the company said.
PostNL and the unions have been negotiating these new agreements since January, and the deals remain subject to approval by the trade union memberships, which is expected to be secured by July.
PostNL, which employs more than 59,000 people in total, including international employees, said in a statement: “This agreement in principle will contribute to ensuring a healthy and stable future for PostNL. A suitable collective labour agreement (CLA) is essential in order to adapt the increasing activity of our parcel service and the decreasing of addressed mail volumes. This agreement in principle will provide such a CLA and will support PostNL in achieving its goals for the future.”
PostNL, which is contending with a significant decline in its letter volumes at present by expanding its parcel business, has been restructuring its mail and parcel networks and moving to more part-time workers.
Industry analysts said the company’s new union agreements would end up saddling PostNL with higher labour costs this year.
Earlier this month, PostNL launched evening delivery services to step up its e-commerce parcel offerings. This week it launched a new service delivering groceries ordered online from supermarket Vershuys.com throughout the province of Limburg.
The new service is a second trial for grocery home delivery after the March 2014 pilot in the Venlo area was deemed a success.
The trials are using a special cold storage packaging developed with Wageningen University and Research Centre, which remains with PostNL after food is delivered.