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Stress UPDATED October 23, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Carphone Warehouse, Health & Safety, Irlam, Kelvin Close, News, Opal, Preston, Rights, Shops, SMC, Stanford House, Stress, TalkTalk, TTT, Warrington, Wednesbury.
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UPDATED 23/10/2011

Management Standards for work related stress

Under UK law, employers have a ‘duty of care’ to protect the health, safety and welfare of all employees while at work. They also have to assess the risks arising from hazards at work including work-related stress.

What are the Management Standards for work related stress?

The Management Standards define the characteristics, or culture, of an organisation where the risks from work related stress are being effectively managed and controlled.

The Management Standards cover six key areas of work design that, if not properly managed, are associated with poor health and well-being, lower productivity and increased sickness absence. In other words, the six Management Standards cover the primary sources of stress at work.

see http://www.hse.gov.uk/stress/standards/  for the six Management Standards

SEE ALSO ; http://www.employmentlawwatch.com/tags/dickins-v-o2/

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Part time workers and PC users October 22, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Carphone Warehouse, Health & Safety, Kelvin Close, News, Opal, Part Time Workers, Preston, Rights, Shops, SMC, Stanford House, Stress, Wednesbury.
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Part time workers and PC users

Many part-time workers are often forced to work their short shift without a break. The regulations are clear that until six hours are worked there is no automatic right to a break.

Yet, this can be concidered unreasonable for all workers. In particular when working with a PC monitor and keyboard or in need of drinks and toilet breaks.

If you are a part timer and instructed by your manager that you are not entitled to a break then concider asking for small “comfort breaks” to allow time away from the your desk to stretch your legs and have a break from the PC.

The regulations may state one thing but your body and mind may tell you another and you need a break.  Afterall your full time colleagues have a break every two to three hours on average so why cant a part timer?

The regulations for PC oprators is covered by regulations on the link below.

http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg36.pdf

Most jobs provide opportunities to take a break from the screen, eg to do filing
or photocopying. Make use of them. If there are no such natural breaks in your
job, your employer should plan for you to have rest breaks. Frequent short
breaks are better than fewer long ones.

other links of interest.

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Employment/Employees/Flexibleworking/DG_173304

http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1576

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Employment/HealthAndSafetyAtWork/DG_4016686

Stress now most common cause of absence-UPDATED October 9, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Carphone Warehouse, Health & Safety, Kelvin Close, News, Rights, Shops, SMC, Stanford House, Stress, Warrington.
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UPDATED 23/10/2011

What are the Management Standards for work related stress?

The Management Standards define the characteristics, or culture, of an organisation where the risks from work related stress are being effectively managed and controlled.

The Management Standards cover six key areas of work design that, if not properly managed, are associated with poor health and well-being, lower productivity and increased sickness absence. In other words, the six Management Standards cover the primary sources of stress at work.

see http://www.hse.gov.uk/stress/standards/  for the six Management Standards

ORIGINAL ARTICLE->

Stress is, for the first time, the most common cause of long-term sickness absence for both manual and non-manual employees, according to this year’s Absence Management survey from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and Simplyhealth.
Organisational change and restructuring is cited as the number one cause of stress at work, highlighting the impact of cuts to jobs, pension benefits and pay freezes.

see the link below for the full report.

Simplyhealth: www.simplyhealth.co.uk/shcore/sh/content/pdfs/surveys/CIPD_2011_Absence_Managemen1.pdf

What to do if you feel stressed or a feeling of unable to cope?

Number ONE –  before things get out of hand get the facts and be honest with yourself.

check out the link below for advice and guidence.

http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/Need%20Support%3F/Employment%20resources/I%20am%20an%20employee/feeling-stressed


PLEASE Look after yourself………..With an average of 40 days of unpaid overtime worked a year, Britons work the longest hours in Europe, so maybe its time to take stock and think about YOU!

The big issue for many who suffer from workplace stress is the effects on family life and relationships. PLEASE Look after yourself – life is hard at the moment – dont struggle on and on and on. Work issues can and do overflow into our home lives when work issues play on our minds. Conversations and comments that would not be given a second thought can, when stressed and tired, become revolving in negative mindtalk, becoming a catalyst for more stress and sleeplessness.

Switching off the office when we go home is easier said than done, especially for managers with company phones and laptops and reports to write.

As a member of a union you will have access to independent advice.  There is a 200 year history of support and experience in people like you helping people like you.

For those who want to seek advice and help indendently check with your Doctor.

Please remember –  You Are Not Alone

…………..and neither are the  Carphone, BBE and TTG MANAGERS 

There is support and help out there.

..the strength of the union is in its members. The stronger the union, the stronger the voice

Attacks on shop workers exposed in Mobile Today September 18, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Shops.
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An article in industry magazine Mobile Today is critical of Carphone’s recent moves to cut full time positions in store.  The CWU assisted Mobile Today with research for the article.  See our past coverage by clicking on our Shops tag.

The company is thought to be reducing its number of full timers in favour of part time staff

Carphone Warehouse retail staff have accused the company of making cuts ‘under the guise of flexibility’, following a number of recent changes.

Concerns were raised after sales and customer director Steve Blan sent an email to retail staff informing them that Carphone does not ‘have the flexibility that we need in stores and we need to be more efficient’.

(more…)

Shops: proposed cuts to full time positions leave workers asking questions September 2, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Shifts, Shops.
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Carphone Worker hears that some full time positions are being cut in most regions across the country, with the result that some staff will be forced on to part time contracts, and to move to work in other stores.  As ever, the communications process from the top is a clear as mud, with as much being speculation and hearsay, rather than a straightforward set out plan.  But from several different locations, we hear:

  • Around four full time positions are being cut per region (apparently, in those regions where people have contacted us)
  • Some workers have been told they may be asked to move shops, or even to work in two different shops during the working week
  • Some workers  have been told they may be asked to start working part time hours

We understand that some of these proposed changes may not be legitimate, given workers’ terms and conditions – and we’d advise everyone to look at their contract of employment.  If you are concerned about these changes, and want to know how about questioning whether they should be implemented for you, contact Tom on 07894 461713 or tdale@cwu.org.  If you have more information or advice, post below.

UPDATE

A CWU organiser has found what is probably at the root of this, as described by an press release posted on Personnel Today:

The Carphone Warehouse, has selected Kronos for Retail [a computer program] to manage the scheduling of 5,000 staff across seven European countries.

Kronos will provide a fully automated employee scheduling solution that will analyse historical trading data, projected sales figures, labour standards, and employee availability before creating the optimum staffing schedule for each store.

We will give a coconut to anyone who can find a mention of looking after workers anywhere in the press release.  Feeling ‘optimised’ now?

p.s. Carphone Worker hates to sound like a broken record.  But this stuff doesn’t just happen with a strong, active, well organised union.  Shop workers are joining the CWU slowly but steadily.  Join us!  If you want to be active with the union, and want to speak to other active members, get in touch!

Adding insult to injury… August 13, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Bonuses, Shops.
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Shop workers tell Carphone Worker that some of them have lost up to £3,000 a year as a result of the changes to the bonus structure. But never mind!  It’s a selling point!  Carphone Worker saw this on a spare copy of Metro earlier today:

carphonecommissionad

0% tact
100% solutions imposed from above

We’ve reported on the changes before (see here).  Since then, a couple of shop workers have contacted us.  Jay tells us that:

per contract CPW gets anything between [£] 350-600 and it’s even more on Orange as the network continues to share profit long term with CPW. £100 and £200 quoted are only GROSS NOTIONAL MARGIN assigned to each store when they make a sale.

… so apparently the company has even more margin to play with than we first thought.  And Paul says:

the company are proposing to offer 37.5 hour contracts to all ‘customer consultants’ which essentially means they’re doing away with our paid dinner breaks , not that many of us actually get one!!! Point is this will be the eqivalent of another £2500.00 pay cut. Now they say this will be voluntary but we all know the disgraceful way this company operates. I would urge all retail staff to join the union post haste and help us to help you get the respect, dignity and salary you deserve. Its got be worth the few quid a month membership fee.

Week of action begins! July 27, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Carphone Worker News Sheet, Shops, Union busting.
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Up and down the country this week, members of the Communication Workers Union will be raising public awareness of the victimisation of two CWU members for speaking out at work, and standing up for fair treatment.  The two members at the company’s Wednesbury logistics centre have been sacked for speaking out at work.

CWU members will be engaging with the public outside Carphone Warehouse stores, handing out leaflets.  However, because we are a union for all workers, we are not asking the public to boycott the shops: sales staff in shops depend on the commision.  CWU members will also be engaging with workers in the shops to explain what we are doing and why, and to give out the first edition of Carphone Shop Worker, a news sheet for staff in shops.

Download…

The CWU has been forced to take this action by the intransigence of local management in Wednesbury, and senior management at Group level, who refuse even to respond to our letters.  For more information, contact Tom Dale on tdale@cwu.org or 07894 461713.

‘New deal’ hits shop workers hard July 10, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Bonuses, Pay, Shops.
2 comments

Shop workers are set to be hard hit by changes to the commission structure. For many, it could mean a reduced take home packet of several hundred pounds. Never afraid to dress an attack on terms and conditions up in glossy management speak, the company is calling this the New Deal. Here is a picture of workers during the last ‘new deal’ (which was in the USA in 1930s, also during a recession).

newdealusa

Oh, great.  We’re hearing shop workers around the country are angry, and rightly so.  One worker contacted Carphone Worker to say,

CPW’s debts has already been paid back by Buy Best and in the garb of credit crunch CPW has curtail the commission which is unjust. Now on every contract they get £100 and if goes with the insurance then £200 and what actually does the person who sells the contract get?  only £6.40/hour…

So the question everyone’s asking is… what can we do?

Basically, we need to get organised.  We know some people are talking about striking, but it’s pretty hard to strike unless you’ve got some form of organisation: it’s the sort of decision workers need to take together.  The danger is that we let this slide, and then people come to accept things as just how they are.  So:

  1. Get in touch with us.  Call Tom on 07894 461713 or email tdale@cwu.org
  2. Speak to others about the need to get organised and do something.  Find others willing to get involved.
  3. Join the union if you haven’t done already

Shop workers do not have to accept this!