TfNSW capitulates on Transport Shared Services access to flex time: Update on PSA flex time and workload dispute
Members inTransport Shared Services (TSS) would be aware the PSA has been having continued discussions with Transport for NSW (TfNSW) on your access to flex time as well as workloads. These discussions culminated in the PSA notifying TfNSW of a dispute.
The PSA and TfNSW met on 15 February to attempt to resolve the dispute. As a result, the PSA has achieved substantial crucial outcomes for members in TSS. These outcomes include access to flex time in accordance with the policy, increases in staffing and provision of vital information relevant to the reforms. Below is a summary of the dispute and outcomes.
Leading to our dispute, TfNSW attempted to advise the PSA that it was not restricting TSS employees to three flex days per settlement period. Yet, in the same breath, TfNSW was attempting to seek agreement that to access more than three flex days, employees needed to agree to greater flexibility in workload allocation with staff accepting work outside their listed allocation without overtime.
The PSA did not accept the premise that employees were required to accept more work to access flex time under the Transport for NSW, Sydney Metro and Roads and Maritime Services Flexible Working Hours Agreement 2019 (the Agreement) and subsequent Flexitime, Standard and Other Working Hours Procedure (the Procedure).
TfNSW accepted in the dispute meeting that the Flex Time Policy was to apply in accordance with the Agreement and Procedure. Although management asserted there never was a restriction, rather Team Leaders were confused when they continued to decline flex above three days based on the restriction.
Ultimately, the PSA’s intervention has resulted in TfNSW lifting/acknowledging openly there is no restriction to three flex days per settlement period. Management should be advising your Team Leaders. If members continue to have issues, please contact the PSA; we will intervene on your behalf.
The past two years have been stressful to say the least.
Payroll and Personnel
The Payroll and Personnel restructure results in 19 employees leaving, as we put to TfNSW it is going to require 2000-3000 extra employees’ pays to be reattributed. Since the initial proposal, more than two years ago, TfNSW has been told it was unrealistic to expect this work to be redistributed and workloads be manageable.
Management has continued to disregard the PSA’s and members’ concerns; dogmatically asserting that a time and motion study informed the design. The PSA has never been provided the details of this study, including how the data was collected, how much data was collected and how was it analysed. Importantly, that data underpins the premise of TfNSW’s resourcing position in the reform. We will be requesting access to that.
The PSA’s dispute sought the data from the time and motion study and the co-design that informed the restructure as well as involvement in the reconfiguration of work with the remaining employees. The PSA has been successful in gaining access to information surrounding outcomes of the time and motion study, but no data to support it. The PSA is currently reviewing the information that has been provided.
Management will engage further around the workload that will remain. If members continue to have workload issues, please contact the PSA; we will intervene on your behalf.
Payroll Integrity and Compliance
We understand that employees within Integrity and Compliance have repeatedly over the past two years told management that workloads were unrealistic. No action was taken. As a result you have had to endure unreasonable stressors.
It was only after months of the PSA echoing your concerns has action been taken. The PSA has been assured one new hire is coming and TfNSW is in the process of recruiting two labour hire. Whilst the PSA in principle does not agree with the use of labour hire we understand the urgency for members to have extra hands on deck.
Management has agreed to regular meetings with local Delegates to discuss local issues such as these and we expect resourcing will be an ongoing discussion. Members can continue to raise issues with Delegates, and they will raise them on your behalf.
Though not part of the dispute exactly, we discussed the hours being forfeited within TSS. Not only does this reflect the workload issues but that there was a lack of oversight at a local level which was resulting in members doing work and not being compensated.
As the PSA highlighted to TfNSW managers have an obligation to have oversight of the hours employees within their team are working to ensure that their team members are not forfeiting hours. It is not the sole obligation of the employee.
In saying that, we want to encourage members if during their settlement period they are at risk of ending the period with hours forfeited to approach their manager. The flex time Agreement and Procedure provide you with various options that include:
- Approval to carry over more than 30 hours;
- Payment of overtime;
- Payment of time in lieu; or
- Ensure your workload is reduced so you can work your standard hours.
The PSA has developed a template members can utilise to commence these discussions with their managers, you can get that HERE.
As a result of the various issues raised by the PSA, TSS management has agreed to regular ongoing meetings to discuss local issues. Your delegates will be attending these meetings.
If members continue to have issues, please contact the PSA; we will intervene on your behalf.
The PSA with your delegates will review the information provided by TfNSW. Next week we will be holding a members’ meeting to provide further updates and get your feedback. Details are as follows:
Date Thursday, 24 February 2022
Click HERE to register for this meeting.
The results from our dispute could not have been achieved without our members’ involvement, whether coming to meetings or simply providing us with information about what is happening on the ground. You as members have all contributed to the success of this dispute.
If you are not a member of the PSA now is the time to JOIN.