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Understanding redundancy


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#51 born.a.girl

Posted 14 October 2019 - 03:22 PM

View Postlizzzard, on 14 October 2019 - 10:54 AM, said:

All the calls to ‘join the union’  puzzle me. Although I rarely agree with the tactics employed by a number of unions (or their ethics) I understand the role they play for workers who have limited options to get other jobs in certain sectors, and also little individual power (aircraft mechanics for example) which mean they can get majorly exploited by employers. But this isnt the context here. Sometimes management decisions don’t seem to make sense....but staff are also not always aware of all the factors being considered either. Disagreeing with a decision doesn’t make is unfair or prevent your ability to respond constructively. For a highly skilled IT professional I would guess the OP is in a reasonable position to adapt and find new opportunities.


I found them very sensible.  When my husband was made redundant, the union negotiated on behalf of a number of them, to get conditions removed, others added, to stop it being too much in favour of the employer.

Sometimes management decisions are actually unfair and unreasonable.  A union won't be able to overturn reasonable  and fair conditions, and are better at being able to work out which is which.

Employees, on the other hand, only have their own perspective, as does the company.

#52 TheGreenSheep

Posted 14 October 2019 - 03:33 PM

In my DHs case, there was no Union for his role, so he had to rely on advice from an Industrial Relations lawyer. The advice was, that whilst unfair, it wasn’t worth his while to pursue, he was better off remaining employable, then winning a case in the Industrial Relations court and a small increase in pay out and being ostracized as it’s a small industry. It was sound advice and he was employed by his farewell morning tea.

#53 alfoil hat

Posted 14 October 2019 - 04:01 PM

View PostDadto2, on 14 October 2019 - 12:16 PM, said:

If my role was made redundant, are they obligated to demonstrate to me why the role was made redundant?

To YOU? No. To the Fair Work Commision if you made an unfair dismissal claim? Yes they would need to demonstrate this.

A redundancy is genuine if a role is no longer required due to a restructure, or a business downturn and the employer has followed the relevant consultation clause from the award/EA. A redundancy is not genuine if it was reasonable that the person be redeployed within the business.

#54 Mozzie1

Posted 14 October 2019 - 04:26 PM

Just take the money and run. I would imagine after 8 years at a university, the payout will be attractive.

#55 HamsterPower

Posted 15 October 2019 - 01:10 PM

Yes I don’t understand all the union recommendations here as that just isn’t how the IT industry works. I know no-one who is in a union as there isn’t one for IT in general.
IT is a fast changing industry by its very nature and that does mean jobs legitimately become redundant more often than other industries. This isn’t as negative as it may sound though as usually it’s just means the work is shifting to another company or skill area- which needs people!
I have seen people fight redundancy and I must say it never ends well, especially if they stay on. With the current good market I would use it as a good way to get a new , likely higher paid job.
It’s really hard not to take it personally but it is not a reflection on you, if you can use it as a cash injection to give you a push to get a new job you will really come out of this okay.
Other industries may be very different but IT is somewhere this is extremely commonplace , as as PP mentioned , there usually is a good business reason behind it, even if it doesn’t seem that way.

Take the money and run to your next exciting role - it can be so awesome.

#56 YodaTheWrinkledOne

Posted 15 October 2019 - 03:17 PM

View PostHamsterPower, on 15 October 2019 - 01:10 PM, said:

Yes I don’t understand all the union recommendations here as that just isn’t how the IT industry works. I know no-one who is in a union as there isn’t one for IT in general.
The OP's employer is a university. There is a pretty established union for university employees (NTEU) which covers both academic and professional (non-academic) jobs, which would definitely cover the IT people. It wouldn't be the first time the NTEU have had to advocate for IT employees within a university environment.

Very few people have said fight the redundancy (which hasn't even been confirmed yet, the OP is still speculating on what *might* happen). Most people have said to get advice and advocate for the best deal. That's where the NTEU might be able to help. The union won't prevent the re-structure (if that's what happens) but they can advocate for the people affected.

#57 born.a.girl

Posted 15 October 2019 - 03:31 PM

View PostYodaTheWrinkledOne, on 15 October 2019 - 03:17 PM, said:

The OP's employer is a university. There is a pretty established union for university employees (NTEU) which covers both academic and professional (non-academic) jobs, which would definitely cover the IT people. It wouldn't be the first time the NTEU have had to advocate for IT employees within a university environment.

Very few people have said fight the redundancy (which hasn't even been confirmed yet, the OP is still speculating on what *might* happen). Most people have said to get advice and advocate for the best deal. That's where the NTEU might be able to help. The union won't prevent the re-structure (if that's what happens) but they can advocate for the people affected.

Yep, that's what happened for my husband. Specialised area within Government.  The union, with their knowledge and experience, were able to negotiate better terms for them.

I don't think anyone's deluded enough to think being a member of a union means you can fight the redundancy.

#58 Dadto2

Posted 15 October 2019 - 03:41 PM

We already have an enterprise agreement, which is something the union have negotiated with my employer and it stipulates all the conditions of the redundancy. So I don't think that's something I can negotiate. But it seems pretty generous anyway.

#59 *Spikey*

Posted 15 October 2019 - 03:47 PM

Sure, but they are also able to review the process and ensure that it has been applied appropriately to those being made redundant. Otherwise, you are at risk of being made redundant at the whim of someone who can do so because they don't like the colour of your hair.

#60 Not Escapin Xmas

Posted 15 October 2019 - 03:59 PM

To quote Bing Lee 'everything is negotiable'. It's SO true! So whatever you do, don't just accept whatever they say first. You can always think up a reason why you deserve some extra $$, and you should. It's not personal, it's a business transaction.

#61 sophiasmum

Posted 16 October 2019 - 08:34 AM

I work for a big bank, and my role was made redundant a couple years ago. The work wasn't going anywhere, so it really meant they were going to hire other less skilled workers to do it for cheaper. I had 2 weeks to "contest" the decision, but really there is nothing you can say to convince them to reverse the decision. I've never known anyone succeed. So after these 2 weeks I had 6 weeks with an allocated career consultant to find another internal role. This could include a secondment, which simply extends your "grace" period. If at the end of this 6 weeks I had not secured another internal role, I had to take the money & go. Then I had another 6 weeks with an external consultant to help me find an external job.

#62 Nasty Poobah

Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:00 AM

Yep, the NTEU is a very good advocate for university staff. If you haven't worked in the tertiary sector then you may not realise just how effective they can be. The fact that the OP is in IT is irrelevant.

Universities are very good at trying to shaft their staff -- both academic and general.

EFS

Edited by Nasty Poobah, 16 October 2019 - 10:00 AM.


#63 mayahlb

Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:57 AM

NTEU  is very involved in universities and is fairly well established as advocating or providing advice for university employers, academic and other wise. They can be massively effective and supportive, but people outside of this sector are not always aware of this. Hence why people are saying talk to the union etc. You might find that it is NTEU who have actually negotiated the EBA under which the OP is working so there is a chance they are very aware of what provisions are available for him.

Universities are very good as shafting staff, stuffing them around, getting rid of positions when it makes absolutely no sense to do it in the first place and then whinging because they have to find new employees for the position they made redundant because everything is falling into a heap. In case you are wondering, yeah that is experience talking. I was involved in a "restructure" where many positions were gotten rid of. Unfortunately most of the people were on 1-2yr contracts so they just paid them out, no redundancy payments. Funnily enough, most of those positions came up requiring employment 1-3 years down the track.

I'd look at what they are offering and weigh it up. I'm fairly sure that if your EBA is anything like the one I'm currently working under that 8yrs service would provide a very nice payout. It might even end up that you don't end up being offered redundancy but could be offered a comparative role.

#64 Dadto2

Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:35 PM

Ok so just found out today my team is losing 1 position, 3 of us have to apply for 2 positions.

Edited by Dadto2, 16 October 2019 - 12:53 PM.


#65 *Spikey*

Posted 16 October 2019 - 04:54 PM

Ah, the old restructure con. Where two people do the work of three.

Time to apply for promotions externally, as well.

#66 But seriously

Posted 16 October 2019 - 04:58 PM

View Post*Spikey*, on 16 October 2019 - 04:54 PM, said:

Ah, the old restructure con. Where two people do the work of three.

Time to apply for promotions externally, as well.

And a Hunger Games process to get there

#67 Dianalynch

Posted 16 October 2019 - 05:30 PM

I’d use the time to apply for jobs elsewhere, a spill and fill is never fun.

#68 Etta

Posted 16 October 2019 - 05:36 PM

View PostDadto2, on 15 October 2019 - 03:41 PM, said:

We already have an enterprise agreement, which is something the union have negotiated with my employer and it stipulates all the conditions of the redundancy. So I don't think that's something I can negotiate. But it seems pretty generous anyway.

This is actually why all of you should be in the union. Union members pay their dues for the work of the union that benefits everyone. NTEU work very hard at enterprise negotiation time. It is not just about pay rises - as OP has pointed out it is to get better conditions too.

#69 Not Escapin Xmas

Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:13 AM

The fact that there is a name for this rubbish behaviour (spill and fill) just shows how widespread it is.

OP - the time has come to make some decisions. Regardless of the spill and fill, the real question is - do you like your job and want to stay there?? If the answer is yes, then have a crack. If the answer is no, then tell your boss you're prepared to take one for the team (ie the redundancy) and then find a new job. Everything else is just clouding the issue.

#70 RynandStompy

Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:20 AM

View PostHeather11, on 10 October 2019 - 01:19 PM, said:

I don't understand why a business would go through a redundancy to then employ people into the same position.  Unless of course they didn't like the person in that job.

From my understanding paying out people is pretty expensive. Redundancy pay, long service leave, annual leave.  If they are just going to replace that person then they are not saving money at all.

OP, you said they brought in contractors.  Maybe they need to employ temporary staff for the periods they are busy, ie don't work during holidays.  I work in a school and I don't work or get paid during school holidays.

Often the reason is "Senior mgmt say chop x heads as that's the target for next Fin Year". Decision makers don't care about what happens the following Fin Year due to short term thinking and lack of care ..they're usually not intending to be around themselves by that time due to a) trying to get promoted by stepping over the heads they chopped, or b) getting their own big exit package.
Businesses seemed to be better at even medium plan thinking in the past but now a 2year plan is seen as excessive or career limiting by "not being Agile enough".

But of course, skills and IP go, service drops, institutional knowledge erodes, thus more outsourcing happens..a viscous cycle.

View PostHeather11, on 10 October 2019 - 01:19 PM, said:

I don't understand why a business would go through a redundancy to then employ people into the same position.  Unless of course they didn't like the person in that job.

From my understanding paying out people is pretty expensive. Redundancy pay, long service leave, annual leave.  If they are just going to replace that person then they are not saving money at all.

OP, you said they brought in contractors.  Maybe they need to employ temporary staff for the periods they are busy, ie don't work during holidays.  I work in a school and I don't work or get paid during school holidays.

Often the reason is "Senior mgmt say chop x heads as that's the target for next Fin Year". Decision makers don't care about what happens the following Fin Year due to short term thinking and lack of care ..they're usually not intending to be around themselves by that time due to a) trying to get promoted by stepping over the heads they chopped, or b) getting their own big exit package.
Businesses seemed to be better at even medium plan thinking in the past but now a 2year plan is seen as excessive or career limiting by "not being Agile enough".

But of course, skills and IP go, service drops, institutional knowledge erodes, thus more outsourcing happens..a viscous cycle.

#71 YodaTheWrinkledOne

Posted 17 October 2019 - 08:00 AM

View PostNot Escapin Xmas, on 17 October 2019 - 06:13 AM, said:

The fact that there is a name for this rubbish behaviour (spill and fill) just shows how widespread it is.

OP - the time has come to make some decisions. Regardless of the spill and fill, the real question is - do you like your job and want to stay there?? If the answer is yes, then have a crack. If the answer is no, then tell your boss you're prepared to take one for the team (ie the redundancy) and then find a new job. Everything else is just clouding the issue.
If they are on fixed-term contracts (ie. 12 month contracts), a redundancy may not be on offer for the person who is not successful, particularly if the two new positions are advertised for external as well as internal applicants. The university will save money if they don't have to offer a redundancy (call me a cynic!)

#72 Dadto2

Posted 17 October 2019 - 10:21 AM

View PostNot Escapin Xmas, on 17 October 2019 - 06:13 AM, said:

The fact that there is a name for this rubbish behaviour (spill and fill) just shows how widespread it is.

OP - the time has come to make some decisions. Regardless of the spill and fill, the real question is - do you like your job and want to stay there??

Yes I want to stay. It's going to be a long process I think. I'm not sure about the application/interview process. The 3 of us have the same job titles, but the other two do something completely different. I have another 2 colleagues that do the same thing as me but all 3 of us have different job titles. They've obviously seen 3 x software analysts on the org chart and just said cut 1.

The issue is for me the other two don't have a high workload, but they (kind of) need two people for backup, one is away/sick they have at least one person there. Well they don't need backup, but that has always been my boss's perception. We can manage with only one of them, but if it was up to my boss, I would speculate he would keep them and get rid of me.

So this is where the confusion lies. To me this doesn't seem like a standard recruiting process, as we do different things. They are not necessarily recruiting someone to do a a specific role. Who is going to be on the interview panel? If this was a typical recruitment then obviously my manager and those close to my team that understand the job specifics. I feel that would put me at a disadvantage. Doesn't matter how good my CV, application and interview goes, it was already pre-determined who was getting the role.

#73 Kiwi Bicycle

Posted 17 October 2019 - 11:59 AM

They should be providing a structure chart and job description for both roles for then for you to interview to. The interview will most likely be the manager plus an HR person.
Titles don't mean anything, only description and/or pay grade band. I was made to apply for a role when a new manager restructured my department. He used the same job titles but significantly added or deleted responsibilies. I was unsuccessful as I had zero experience in one "critical" new responsibility ( ecommerce) and therefore as my former role didn't exist, I was redundant. Oh yeah and 2 weeks into my notice period I was told the manager hired a former colleague from outside the company to that position.

#74 Quay11

Posted 17 October 2019 - 10:46 PM

View PostDadto2, on 10 October 2019 - 11:22 AM, said:

The last restructure, we paid hundreds of thousands of $$ for Deloitte to come in to manage the restructure. It was described by many as "farcical".  People that should have gone, stayed and vice versa. We all got whacky new job titles that were meaningless and irrelevant and teams (including ours) who were going through quiet periods actually got more staff, when we could have done with dropping some.

So I feel that the decision makers, perhaps aren't in touch with what is really going on in the various teams. At least for that restructure they weren't.

This sounds familiar. Many companies seem to do this and most seem to fail at it....  I think McKinsey listed a 50% failure rate for corporate restructures... Sounds right from my experienve too (ironically with McKinsey...).

#75 Dadto2

Posted 18 October 2019 - 09:13 AM

View PostKiwi Bicycle, on 17 October 2019 - 11:59 AM, said:

They should be providing a structure chart and job description for both roles for then for you to interview to.

As fas as they are concerned and the org chart is concerned it's one and the same role. Org chart lists 3 x Software Analysts, the job description for each of those 3 roles is identical, so from their perspective each of us could the others job, we are all equal, with a comparable skillset.

But this isn't the case. They have very different roles, they work solely with Macs, I work solely with Windows. We can't do each others jobs. The job description is very vague and non-specific, to an external person they would assume we all did the same job.

View PostQuay11, on 17 October 2019 - 10:46 PM, said:

This sounds familiar. Many companies seem to do this and most seem to fail at it....  I think McKinsey listed a 50% failure rate for corporate restructures... Sounds right from my experienve too (ironically with McKinsey...).

What do you mean by failure rate?




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