Sunday 18 February 2018

Dublin Bus claims it will fund pay rise through 'efficiencies'

(stock photo)
(stock photo)

Anne-Marie Walsh

Dublin Bus claims it will fund a pay rise for its workers that will cost more than €30m through "cost efficiencies" but will not give details of how this will be achieved.

The company repeatedly said it could not afford any increase above 8.25pc over three years, but agreed to an 11.25pc pay rise after six days of strikes.

The 11.25pc pay rise, worth 3.75pc a year for three years, is just slightly below the wage rise paid to Luas workers of 3.8pc a year after a series of rolling strikes earlier this year.

A Dublin Bus spokeswoman said the pay rise would have no impact on fares, as these are set by the National Transport Authority.

Unions insist they did not concede any extra productivity measures that would bring in revenue. In fact, the pay deal document says that "productivity bargaining" talks with staff will take place on the possibility of more pay rises.

When asked how much the pay rise will cost, she said the company was not providing those details. She said it would be funded through "off-setting efficiency measures", including "lean management, changes to scheduling processes and absenteeism programmes".

However, under the heading of "lean management" the document says it will have no impact on staffing levels. It is difficult to know how a plan that means unions will agree to schedule changes will bring in extra cash. The document says a First Care System absence management programme aims to achieve further reductions in absence levels. However, this could hardly be relied on.

Sources claimed the company would be pushed to its limits and would have to fund the pay rise itself as there is nothing in the document to bring in extra revenue. They said a plan to bring in a drugs and alcohol policy in the deal would cost money.

Irish Independent

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