Qantas gets tough on unions | Australian Frequent Flyer
Australian Frequent Flyer

Welcome to Australia's leading independent Frequent Flyer and Travel Resource since 1998!
Our site contains tons of information that will improve your travel experience.

Joining AFF is fast, simple & absolutely free - register now and take immediate advantage of these great BENEFITS.

Once registered, this box will disappear. And you will see fewer advertisements :)

Qantas gets tough on unions

Status
Not open for further replies.

Yada Yada

Established Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
1,872
theaustralian.news.com.au said:
Qantas gets tough on unions

Staff have been asked to reassess their role, aviation writer Steve Creedy reports
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

August 18, 2006

QANTAS has signalled it is prepared to play hardball with unions to get the productivity cuts it wants. The airline has already sidestepped its flight attendants union to sign up Jetstar International cabin crew on Australian Workplace Agreements.

Qantas pilots in a new freight venture have been put on AWAs, and the airline is calling for a freeze on domestic pilots' base pay while indicating it wants its international pilots to work more hours.

Chief executive Geoff Dixon yesterday warned that Qantas would not be satisfied with incremental change, but needed to "make fundamental change on a much greater scale than in the past". He said: "While we will continue with existing efficiency programs, unfortunately, much of our savings over the next two years must come from labour costs, which totalled $3.34 billion in 2005-06.

"This will involve, as already outlined, job losses and significant changes to achieve greater flexibility and productivity."

In a letter sent to staff, Mr Dixon emphasised that each segment of Qantas would have to become a profit centre, stand on its own record, recover its own cost of capital and compete within the group for investment.

<...snip...>

While Mr Dixon said there was no union blacklist, he noted that some unions were "easier and more pleasing to deal with". He was particularly critical of the Flight Attendants Association of Australia's international division.

"They are the same group who threatened Qantas quite aggressively last year when we were doing an AWA, and we just don't have to deal with people like that," he said. "We do have to deal with them in Qantas, but we certainly don't have to inflict them on Alan (Joyce, Jetstar CEO)."

<...snip...>

But FAAA international division secretary Michael Mijatov accused Mr Dixon of trampling over his workers to get cheap labour. He predicted Jetstar would base a sizeable proportion of its cabin crew in Bangkok, where flight attendants working for Qantas earned just $1000 a month.

He said Mr Dixon was creating 200 inferior jobs at Jetstar, and 400 quality flight attendant jobs were being destroyed at Qantas.

Mr Mijatov said Qantas was one of the world's most profitable airlines due to the hard efforts and concessions from staff over the past decade, while executives ran rampant with obscene bonuses.

"Not content with that, now they effectively want to drive people down to McDonald's-type conditions here," he said. "They are such big heroes now they've got the Howard Government's industrial laws and everything's weighted towards them.

"They are trampling over their workforce with no regards to how people feel, their job security or their living standards."

<...snip...>

Australian and International Pilots Association general manager Peter Somerville said Qantas was announcing a significant $480 million profit and giving its two most senior executives $12 million payouts in circumstances where short-haul pilots were being told to take a three-year pay freeze.

He said pilots were long-term employees who wanted the company to make money and share in its success.

"We're concerned about the double standards between what Qantas says and what it does," Mr Somerville said. "And we're concerned about the effect that Qantas management is having on the reputation of the company."


Full Story...
Probably nothing new in the above, although it seems that the screws will be turned even harder than they have been before. I wonder how long Geoff Dixon can continue to squeeze his employees like this, especially the FA's, without increasing damage to the company's reputation via poor customer experience. After all, the FA's are the frontline.
 

munitalP

Suspended
Joined
Oct 10, 2006
Messages
3,780
Flights
My Map
GO QANTAS!!! Anyone who gets tough on UNIONS (Useless Nitwits Insisting On Negotiating S%#*) deserves my vote!

Lets face it Australia, we pay FAR TOO MUCH for essential items such as PETROL, ELECTRICITY, GAS, BEER...

The reason we pay too much (add builders, plumbers, sparkies etc to the above list) is we are being collectively screwed as a country. Look at the likes of Sweden, Germany, Austria – people are proud to be employed, they take a sense of ownership in what they do for a job… how would I know, I have been there, I have seen it and guess what… they get paid equal or more than our union brothers get – without the crap that hitches a ride for free….

I take pride in the fact that I employ Australians. I take pride in the fact that none of them are union members. I cringe knowing that I will have to shortly do a job in my home town of Melbourne because of the out of control unions…

Go Qantas, get tough, get rid of the idiots who with their 7 years of schooling believe that they can hold a nation to ransom, (each and every one of the Union activists wouldn’t last 5 min’s working for themselves) and make the profits for the shareholders better, improve the service etc….

Gordon
 
Last edited:

simongr

Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 10, 2006
Messages
14,229
This is a strange comment:

newspaper said:
QANTAS has signalled it is prepared to play hardball with unions to get the productivity cuts it wants.
Very strange way of phrasing - I guess they mean increase in producitivty through labour cuts and salary reductions - I dont think they meant to cut productivity.
late 70's/
Never been a fan of unions - they seem the same here that they were in the early 80s in the UK - where they dismantled industry. Businesses seem to live in fear of the unions in many of the clients I have worked with - rational business decisions can not be taken because the unions will strike and prevent the business from doing business.

There needs to be a happy medium and at the moment it just seems so often that we have the unions being unreasonable and the bosses trying to break them - rather than working together - which is where unions can work - working with management and understanding that if there cant be a shareholder faced outcome - there wont be jobs. The heavy maintenance teams priced themselves out of the market - and many now have no jobs at all - that certainly pays less than some reduciton in benefits doesnt it?
 

bravoecho1

Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2004
Messages
221
I do believe that unions have their own agenda, somewhat removed from that of their members.

I have seen three businesses go the wall over fights with unions. The joke of it is because of their actions, not only did their members not get their pay rise and increase in conditions but they lost their jobs. And the unions response in all three cases - we were doing our job looking after our members. Thank god i'm a free agent!!
 

serfty

Moderator
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
Messages
40,394
Flights
My Map
This all goes back to the days of the so called "Two Airline System" when there was plenty of "Meat on the Bone" to divvy up between the companies, managements, employees, TA's etc. all paid for by travellers who had no choice.

(FWIW, I flew on a the cheapest standard MEL-SYD-MEL return far in 1985 to see a Hawks - Swans Match. This was called a "Super-Apex" fare and it cost $208)
 

Yada Yada

Established Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
1,872
I work in the construction industry so I know what the unions are like. I also know what many of the larger companies are like. Practices on both sides leaves a lot to be desired. :mad:

The old saying "it takes two to tango" is very much true. Unions wouldn't behave like they do without being given good reason by company management. Company management wouldn't behave like it does without being given good reason by the unions. The key factor as always is greed. And it's not good. :(
 

JohnK

AFF Supporter
Joined
Mar 22, 2005
Messages
41,162
Unions are a waste of time.

They abandoned my brother when he needed them after being a member for 15 years.
 

Dave Noble

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
6,419
Unions have a useful place in industry and can provide useful assistance in many situations. I have seen 1st hand in the UK the assistance that they can offer to members in various situations.

I do not agree with situations where unionism stops a company being able to sensibly operate and the unions rule the company

Dave
 

straitman

Moderator
Joined
Apr 27, 2003
Messages
16,829
Flights
My Map
Dave Noble said:
Unions have a useful place in industry and can provide useful assistance in many situations. I have seen 1st hand in the UK the assistance that they can offer to members in various situations.

I do not agree with situations where unionism stops a company being able to sensibly operate and the unions rule the company

Dave
I agree with this whole heartedly. Unions have their place in setting the bottom line and do a good (not great) job in doing so.

Beyond that there are way too many individualized agendas that have little or nothing to do with the membership. Bill Shorten (the future politician) at Beaconsfield is the clasic example.

I've also seen it at my work for many months now where there is an ongoing dispute that affects the production. The dispute is a head butting exercise between two unions :!:
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

AFF on Air Podcast

  • jb747’s Stellar Career with Qantas – AIR013
    Sat, 15 Jun 2019 03:00:41 AEST
      In this special edition of the podcast, Matt chats to John Bartels (a.k.a. jb747) about his flying career with Qantas, the A380, the QF30 incident, flight training, retirem ...
  • Cheap Virgin Australia Business Class – AIR012
    Sat, 01 Jun 2019 03:05:28 AEST
      Find out how to get cut-price Virgin Australia Business Class tickets by buying and redeeming Etihad Guest miles! This episode also includes some listener Q&A and an interv ...
  • Star Alliance Status – AIR011
    Sat, 18 May 2019 09:39:41 AEST
      Find out how to easily earn Star Alliance Gold status with several different frequent flyer programs! This episode also includes an interview with John Blom, Australia’s ...
  • Premium Economy – AIR010
    Sat, 04 May 2019 00:21:32 AEST
      Premium Economy is a great compromise if you want a more comfortable experience than Economy, without paying for Business or First class airfares! In this episode, AFF’s ...
  • Hyperinflation of Points – AIR009
    Sat, 20 Apr 2019 04:49:59 AEST
      Frequent flyer points are a valuable currency, but they aren’t immune from hyperinflation! In this episode, Matt discusses why frequent flyer points are a terrible long-t ...

Community Statistics

Threads
81,575
Messages
1,883,327
Members
49,467
Latest member
pam43
Top