We are disappointed the Communication Workers Union (CWU) has chosen to take industrial action at a time when we are working hard to turn our business around.
What is the dispute over?
The CWU has called for strike action across the Crown network in response to the Post Office’s plans to turnaround the Crown network of around 370 branches and end its reliance on public money. There are two elements to this.
Post Office’s Crown Transformation plans
The Post Office’s Crown network of around 370 branches is losing £37m a year. This is public money and something which cannot be sustained. The Post Office is transforming its Crown network to improve customer experience and in turn bring in new business.
It is investing around £70m in nearly 300 Crown branches to modernise and grow services to ensure their long term viability. The Post Office is committed to keeping branches on high streets across the UK. The best way to do this for 70 of its Crown branches is to partner with a suitable retailer.
Over 10,000 Post Office branches already operate through agreements with retailers. Post Office research shows that customer satisfaction levels are just as high for customers visiting franchise branches as those who access Post Office services via the Crown network.
This is not a closure programme. Branches operating from retailers will offer the same wide range of Post Office products and service levels. A full public consultation will take place before any move takes place and all staff have the right to transfer to the new retailer if they wish.
The Pay Offer
The Post Office is offering a series of cash payments totalling up to £3400. £100 has already been paid and £1300 for 2012/13 is ready to paid. A further two payments of £1000 would also be available linked to the Crown network achieving modernisation targets during 2013/14 and 2014/15.
The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has asked for a consolidated pay increase of 3.5 per cent for 2012/13 and a further increase of 3.25 per cent for 2013/14.
We have recently announced WHSmiths as a proposed partner of 16 Crown Branches and the next steps of our £70m investment plan for high street branches - to read more click here.
For more about our wider modernisation plans please click here.
Last updated 16:30 on 20/11/2013