Last Thursday, Achmea was informed about the results of our mini-survey on Achmea's compensation to employees for increased costs as a result of high inflation. The most important conclusion was that more than 85% of the hundreds of members/employees who responded indicated that they were disappointed. We have asked Achmea for a response and we have now received one.
Achmea understands that employees had hoped for more and recognizes that these are also times of financial uncertainty for employees with high inflation and rising prices. But Achmea also indicates that they also clearly receive 'other voices' from employees. These employees appreciate that Achmea has looked at the possibilities within the limited financial space available and realize that Achmea is also confronted with sharply rising costs that cannot or only partially be passed on to customers.
Achmea also now believes that there is still no room for a generic additional financial contribution, beyond what has been agreed in the collective labor agreement and the advancement of the Climate Budget (including the expansion due to climate investments made in 2022).
Achmea ends its response by stating that it also pays attention to the financial well-being of its employees and tries to assist those employees who need it most.
Achmea does not seem to take the clear results of the mini-survey seriously. Instead of the signal from 85%! of the respondents, Achmea particularly points to the 11% of the respondents who, although they would have preferred to receive a higher compensation, also understand Achmea's consideration. Simply ignoring the opinion of the vast majority of respondents is unwise and painful at the same time.
We have not often experienced a situation in which Achmea employees have spoken out so clearly. Reactions such as 'fobbed off with an accounting advantage', 'worthless', 'Achmea should be ashamed' and 'cloth for the bleeding' are no exception as comments on the survey. Some even speculate about leaving Achmea, because they 'have to think about their own finances too'. Comments are also made about a lack of appreciation at a time when work pressure is increasing and job satisfaction is disappearing further.
In short, the loyalty of its own employees is put to the test by Achmea.
For now, unfortunately, we cannot force Achmea to break open the collective labor agreement. The current collective labor agreement expires on 1 December 2023. It is therefore expected that we will start preparing for the new negotiations after the summer of 2023. And whatever 'the wishes' for the new collective labor agreement may be, as far as we are concerned there will still be a substantial 'open bill' for 2023. And that bill will, in our opinion, be on top of the pile of new collective labor agreement proposals.
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