November IBT/CWA Association report on Labor/Management meeting
US Airways Labor/BOD meeting
November 10, 2010 3:45 PM
I spoke about this before and it has been getting worse, not better. I know Doug, that you plan on coming out to meet with and talk to the workers in the field, but we need to take some immediate action on the following issues;
We have never seen so many discrepancies’ issued. Not with Sabre at Empire, Pacer at Piedmont , or with Sabre the” cheap package” as we called it at US airways.
This system is deficient , but instead of fixing it, the errors made by the automation that does not work are being placed on the backs of the workers that use it. In the form of ecrs and verbal threats. As I said in the last meeting, the employees Dan Smith, from IBT, and I represent, feel the company is looking for any reason to fire them.
We hear all over the system that there is a discipline matrix in the works for
discrepancies‘, yet Donna Paladini said she knows nothing of this.
Fix the problems with the system, it will save us a lot of revenue from what I can see instead of blaming the people who are forced to use the system, which is anti-productive and time consuming for the sups that have to write up these ecr’s then rescind them after finding out that it was not the agents fault and ruining someone’s day.
Robert Isom and Suzanne Boda asked to see me after the meeting, they did not know this was going on. Suzanne took copies of the examples I had and said she would follow up with me. They did now know of any matrix for discipline regarding discrepencies.
I - Learning
I guess the company sees this is a money saver, which it can be for items that are simple. When it comes to secure flight or safety though, nothing can replace one on one classroom training where we can interact, ask questions and make suggestions that may help the company going forward.
We need time to complete this training. Asking people to do it at home is unfair and we are telling people not to do company “required” training on their own time.
If someone is trying to complete a 30 min course while standing at a gate, they may get interrupted numerous times by customers and co-workers. Trying to absorb and comprehend something is difficult when you are interrupted every 5 mints.
To top if all off, if we don’t find time to complete a course in a certain amount of time, we are disciplined. We need time as we had in the past, to be trained and be well educated about our jobs so we can better serve our customers.
Is there a correlation between less training, one on one and more discipline being issued due to not following procedures or more customer complaints?
The company was proud of the classroom training results for the customer service recovery, that should be a sign that classroom training is much more effective then reading some stuff out of the computer while trying to work. IAM fleet rep also said his members are also not comfortable with I-learning, especially when taking the course on dangerous goods.
Robert Isom responded as did Suzanne Boda saying that they are re-evaluating the I-learning based on the completion factors and scores people are getting to see if some of the courses should be taught in a classroom. They did not address the discipline issue I raised. Doug Parker did agree that people should not be doing this on their own time. When the IAM fleet and mechanic reps raised this again in their presentations, Parker said, I hear you, we have had this now with 3 groups, we will follow up.
We are still getting reports of problems.
The union would like to have a copy of the document when someone shows a no-clock-due to a failed attempt.
Now if we have an error show up we have to chase down a manger in order to get paid for the day even though we have witnesses that we were at work. When we used to swipe our cards to clock in we did not have this many problems with no clocks. Now we have long term, reliable employees being written up when it is not their fault.
I also raised the issue that Dan sent me from PHX about the time it is taking to go through security, sometimes 10-20 mins due to the new process at TSA. The PHX agents are getting written up if they are not at their gates within 10 mins of clocking in.
I want to have more workbrain audits done, similar to the one we did in TPA. The IAM fleet and Mechanic reps at the meeting agreed that this is an issue for their folks as well,
Robert Isom responded and asked what locations we should do the audits in, so let your local leadership know if your location is having workbrain issues and specifics so we can follow up with him. He also addressed the PHX issue saying they need to be at their gates within 10 mins, they are aware of this problem and are trying to work with TSA but the employee line seems to be the problem for some reason. They are looking into it but would not agree to change the 10 min. rule.
Parker also had the same response when heard similar issues raised by the IAM reps, so I believe they are going to take a look at this.
Compliance in Reservations
I raised this issue in a meeting with Kerry Hester, Tim Lindemann, Donna Paladini, Ron Harbinson and Suzanne Boda earlier.
I want to mention it briefly again here because I don’t think they realize how this also effects the morale in res. If an agent gets a call 5 mins before their 15 break and it lasts for 20 minutes that puts them way out of compliance. This is totally out of their control. They cannot hang up on the caller or they will be disciplined, yet are being counseled and told to try and change this behavior. I had an example I read in the meeting that said the person(who I did not name) did not meet goal of 93 % she had a 92%. I know this agent, she has over 20 years with us. The sup spent a very long time writing this up and reviewing why she was out of compliance including all the times she was stuck on a call. How much time was wasted on this write up? In one sentence she said you were supposed to sign out at 8 am for your break and you signed out at 8:00:50 seconds. We don’t see the seconds on our screen so when we see it is 8 am we sign out. Management rounded it up to 1 minute and said she was late signing out….this is ludicrous.
All we ask is that before the company writes someone up or counsel them they back out the time agents are stuck on calls and stop rounding up seconds to full minutes when they cannot even see the seconds.
Parker seemed surprised that they round up the minute and most of the people at the table seemed shocked of this petty action. Isom said, a minute is a minute, and we need everyone to be at work. Suzanne Boda said that Kerry and Tim were checking into this and they would follow up with me on whether they can back out the time we are stuck on calls.
After the meeting I sat down with Daniel Pon, VP of Human Resources to discuss the following;
I advised him of the need to have an HR investigation in DAY and MIA. Many complaints are coming in from the agents in those locations that management is causing a very stressful environment. There are complaints of favoritism and discrimination.
Daniel Pon advised me of the diversity training that is going to be held in PHL and DCA and I aksed if this was planned to be done in other locations, he said yes. I told him I had some locations that needed it yesterday and he asked me to send the list to him so he could start making up a schedule.
He also said that most complaints should be followed up within 48 hours. He admitted that there are some they have fallen behind on.
Velvet Hawthorne - CWA STAFF REP