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18 July 2014
Planned strike action next week (Wednesday 23 July) by BECTU and its fellow unions in the BBC has been cancelled following talks earlier today which have resulted in an improved pay offer to staff.
Three hours of talks this morning attended by the unions' senior officials and the BBC's director general, Tony Hall, and Anne Bulford, managing director of finance and operations, concluded with a revised and improved pay offer which BECTU general secretary, Gerry Morrissey has welcomed.
Commenting on the outcome of today's discussions, Gerry Morrissey, said:
"We welcome today's movement from management which means we now have a significantly improved offer which we believe our members should have the opportunity to consider in a ballot."
"The truth is we've seen more movement from management in these negotiations this week, than we have seen in pay talks over the past five years."
Improvements mean two-year deal is now on the table
The full improved offer, which all three unions have agreed will be put to members in the BBC and in Studios and Post-Production Ltd, in a consultative ballot is as follows:
- From 1 August 2014 staff earning less than £50K will receive a flat rate increase of £650; staff earning more than £50K will receive a flat rate increase of £500; payments to be consolidated.
- All allowances and the floors/ceilings of the grades will be increased by 1%;
- London Weighting Allowance at the higher level of £4288 will be payable to all staff earning up to £35K (currently the allowance applies to staff earning up to £25K);
- From 1 January 2015, all staff will receive an additional consolidated payment of £150;
- From 1 January 2015, all allowances, including the floors and ceilings of the grades will go up by an additional 1.7%;
- On 1 August 2015, all staff will receive a 2.5% increase; all allowances and the floors and ceilings of the grades will increase by 2.5%.
A long standing agreement with the BBC guarantees that staff will have reached at least 110% of the salary range for their grade after three years and at least 115% of the range after six years. Any adjustments have been applied either on the individual's anniversary of service or on 1 August each year. The unions have long argued for a consistent approach across the BBC with a preference for adjustments being applied on an individual's anniversary of employment. As a result of this morning's talks the BBC has agreed in principle to adopt the anniversary of employment as the relevant date for any adjustments.
BBC World Service
Union concerns about pay disparities at the BBC's World Service and Monitoring, which management have so far failed to address, will be heard when the new director of HR, Valerie Hughes D'Aeth, takes up her post. Tony Hall has also agreed to be part of those discussions.
Union members at BBC Worldwide rejected a 1.3% pay offer last month and posted a vote for strike action earlier this week. Strike action there has also been cancelled after this morning's talks. There is agreement that Tim Davie, chief executive, will meet with union officials to discuss pay and industrial relations more generally.
The consultative ballots across all three unions - BECTU, the NUJ and Unite - will carry a neutral recommendation. The ballots will be run electronically and will get underway on Tuesday 22 July, closing on Tuesday 5 August.
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