Industrial Action - Head of Department Guidance – work to contract by members of UNITE
UNITE members have voted against taking strike action in respect of this year's pay award but voted to take action short of a strike.
In respect of the latter, UNITE has advised the University that its members have been called to take 'continuous industrial action, consisting of a ban on overtime and working strictly to contract commencing at 00.01 hours on 30 November 2011'.
The following guidance is offered to help manage this situation.
1. Member of staff refuses to undertake overtime.
1.1 Overtime falls into two main categories:
1.2 Voluntary overtime - no existing contractual requirement/payment to undertake overtime exists. Where this is the case members of staff can be asked and encouraged to do overtime but can legitimately refuse.
1.3 Contractual overtime - Staff who have written into their contracts a need to work above normal full-time hours, receive overtime, rota or call-out payments as part of their salary cannot participate in the overtime ban in respect of this additional contracted time. To do so would be a breach of their contract.
1.4 If a member of staff refuses a request to carry out contractual overtime meet with them as described in 2. below.
2. Member of staff refuses to carry out duties claimed to be outside of their contract.
Use the following standard approach in all cases.
2.1. Confirm the request in writing and invite the member of staff to meet with you or their immediate line-manager.
2.2. Explore with them the reasons for their refusal.
2.3. If having done so you consider the request to be reasonable and within the normal requirements of the role (and/or have been done by custom and practice in the past) clearly state that you expect them to carry out the relevant duties.
2.4. If the member of staff continues to refuse, warn them that they may be in breach of their contract and you will take advice on the next step.
Contact your HR Partner should you need further advice on any of the above.