Service Control Grades Meeting Report

At the recent Service Control Grades Meeting a number of topics were discussed, with the following updates:-

DRM & LIS Instructor Grades
After successful lobbying by our Functional Reps, Management have now conceded that these roles require instructor grades. As a result, all locations with these grades will be entitled to an instructor for every 7 staff (or 10-15% of staff compliment).

SCL2 Recruitment
A new campaign for SCL2 recruitment is now due to take place in November - and will be close listed to Service Control Staff

CAPs (Corrective Action Plans), and PIPs (Personal Improvement Plans)
Due to balatant abuses of this unratified process, your Functional Reps are pushing for the use of these documents to be suspended until their purpose and scope is mutually agreed. In the meantime, Staff should therefore request a union rep to be present when they are threatened with one.

SO4 Regrading
Despite this being a long standing issue, management have chosen to once again ignore our request to consider regrading SO4 staff - primarily due to their fear it will 'complicate' the move to Hammersmith. This is again being pursued, although it is expected Management will fiercely resist this move.

Waterloo & City Regrading
For similar reasons, the hard pressed and multi-skilled staff on the W&C are also being victimised by Managements blatant refusal to even consider regrading - despite overwheling evidence in support of their claim. An overtime ban & work to rule is therefore being introduced with a ballot for action short of strike action being tabled to the EC.

Barking cabin Regrading
Again, due to a massive increase in workload and imminent increase in train movements caused by the new District Timetable in the new year, staff are being told there is no 'merit' in their claim for higher grading. This has also been followed up by the threat of 'downgrading' other cabins due to their similarly changed workload, as a means to discourage the pursuit of this claim. This is also now being pursued by your reps.

Hammersmith Control Centre
Despite denials to the contrary, it is evident that the timescales for the project have now slipped dramatically, with a final completion date of 2020 now seeming likely. Your reps have been demanding an honest answer so that staff can plan their futures, but they still won't confirm or deny and change to the timetable.

Creation of a Service Control Branch
This was discussed in detail with the pros and cons of having a branch which solely involves service control staff. The current practice of reps being potentially voted in by friends on Trains or Stations against the wishes of their fellow Control staff was seen to be undemocratic, hence the enquiry as to the possibility of creating an entirely new Service Control Branch. As this would result in a pro rata loss of members from existing branches, coupled with the risk of being seen as an elitist branch, staff were encouraged to go away and consider the full implications of pursuing this route. There were obvious benefits in having a branch which solely addressed and understood the complexity of its members roles, but would perhaps create an even greater perception of a 'them and us' attitude, which may be counter productive for an 'all grades union'. Staff were subsequently asked to look at all options before convening a further Signal Grades meeting in the New Year to make a decision one way or another.

SCAC Recruitment
In another success for common sense, your reps successfully argued for the stopping of the existing SCAC campaign due to inconsistencies in the process and clear examples of a lack of fairness and transparency. As a result, Management have agreed to put everything on hold for now with an agreement to advise of their decision on restarting the entire process expected within a week. Details will follow.

In addition, your reps will also be tabling a motion to clarify the role of SCACs in disciplinary matters, given that some seem to be overstepping the mark in doing the job Senior Managers.

PSCA Revision (Professional Service Control Agreement)
As it is now clear that the existing PSCA is out of date and now irrelevant to many roles, it is the intention of your reps to again push for a revision of the document to reflect current working practices and procedures. Despite Management acknowledging this 18 months ago, the imminent arrival of the new control centre and roles at Hammersmith is thought to be behind their recent change of heart. This however, will again be pursued in order to improve and clarify the roles we are all expected to undertake.

  • You can view the PCSA here