Dermot Corrigan

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Archive for October, 2010

Opinions differ on pay-cuts

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I have a piece on the recruitment page in this week’s Sunday Business Post looking at the contrasting views of employers and workers on whether pay cuts implemented recently in many Irish companies are temporary and will be corrected once / if the economy gets back on its feet, or if a permanent ‘downward adjustment’ of pay levels has taken place.

Brendan McGinty, director of industrial relations and human resource services of the employers’ group Ibec, told me that pay cuts implemented lately were likely to be permanent.

‘‘Some employers include a reference in the revised contract or agreement to a review of the pay cut after a period of time, or subject to certain conditions being met,” said McGinty. “However, few employers make reference to restoring pay to specific levels, or link it to when the economy recovers, as what constitutes a ‘recovery’ is likely to mean different things to different sectors and individual businesses.”

Meanwhile, on the other line, Jimmy Kelly, regional secretary of Unite, was saying that workers had accepted recent pay cuts as a necessary but only temporary measure due to the current extraordinary economic situation.

‘‘Pay cuts have been agreed with unions representing workers where there has been a compelling case made for their necessity,” he said. ‘‘Some pay cuts have been negotiated for the collective good of the staff and the employer. It is generally accepted that, if pay cuts are really necessary now, restoration will be part of the renewed growth that short-term sacrifices will enable.”

I guess both comments can be taken more as negotiating positions than statements of fact, but still, food for thought I guess.

Full story, which also includes advice on legal issues around temporary and permanent pay cuts from Melanie Crowley, partner at Mason Hayes & Curran Solicitors, is through here on the SBPost.ie site.

Written by dermot

October 19th, 2010 at 6:22 pm

Posted in Business