The negotiations between the unions and Philips after the reorganization at the Eindhoven high-tech giant are anything but going well. The FNV believes that Philips managers are trying to get the most out of the pie. “We’re not into that.”
The negotiations about the settlement of the round of redundancies are not without fits, says trade unionist Hans Weijers of the FNV. “When it comes to the reorganization: there is a social plan. The works councils have received the requests for advice from the Philips board and are now considering this. But besides that, there are still some things going on.”
“We hear all kinds of rumors about the reflection principle. That principle means that for people who have interchangeable positions, those who entered the company last are also the first to leave. But that principle is not followed by everyone.”
“What I hear from our supporters is that many managers at Philips believe that people all have unique functions. In this way they can avoid the proportionality principle, which only applies to people who have interchangeable functions. By evading the principle, they can fish the cherry out of the porridge. ‘I want to get rid of Marietje, so that’s how we’re going to organize it,’” says Weijers.
“So if Marietje has been working there longer, but Pietje is a bit better and runs a bit faster, then managers want to take advantage of the reorganization to kick Marietje out. We disapprove of that. So we are going to put these signals on the table at Philips, and Philips must call its managers to order.”
‘Don’t just draw’
Until the problem is resolved, the FNV therefore calls on its members not to simply sign a notice of dismissal. “It is best for them to test a dismissal notice with us. Then they are still free to say to Philips: go to the UWV as the UWV sets strict requirements. I cannot imagine that the UWV will judge that there are only unique positions at a company like Philips,” said the trade unionist.
Apart from the reorganization, there are also no collective bargaining agreements between Philips and the trade unions. Those negotiations are also not progressing very well. On Tuesday, a final offer from Philips was swept off the table by the members of the various unions. Philips subsequently withdrew the offer. The unions will meet with the company again on Friday.
For Eindhoven News: Lila Mehrez