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Achmea: follow-up collective agreement consultations

De Unie continued the collective labor agreement at Achmea on 14 November 2019. The consultation is held in a good atmosphere. We listen carefully to each other and give each other the space to explain ideas.

Main topics are the 34-hour working week, pension, salary increase and duration

There was also talk of the possibility of introducing a 1-hour working week with a two-year collective labor agreement as of 2021 January 34. The parties agree that such an agreement fits well with the agenda for the future that was previously agreed: it gives employees better opportunities to combine work, learning and care in a sustainable manner. De Unie has made it clear that we mainly hear concerns from the members. That Achmea Select in particular offers members no confidence that they can adapt the size of their weekly working hours to the size of the tasks and responsibilities. We have also indicated that we want to set preconditions in advance and that the eventual introduction of the 34-hour working week must always depend on the realization of the preconditions. We will discuss this further in the next meeting.

Increasing pension costs for Achmea's concern

Increasing pension costs are a major concern for employers. Due to the falling interest rate, the pension premium that must be paid is several tens of millions of euros higher. As a result, according to the employer, there is little room for making other collective labor agreements. Achmea has stated in the collective labor agreement consultations that the agreements that can be made about the introduction of a 34-hour working week and a wage increase depend on the agreements that can be made about the control of pension costs.

There was also substantive discussion of the other collective labor agreement proposals

All subjects from the various proposal letters were discussed. For example, the following was discussed:

  • The option to save leave to further enable sustainable employability. For example, to be able to take this up prior to retirement.
  • The option to reduce the salary in a few steps if an employee accepts a lower-scaled position in the context of employability. Or start working fewer hours in the last years before retirement.
  • Ways in which the internal flow of employees can be improved.
  • The extension of fully paid birth leave for partners from 4 to 6 weeks.
  • Improving the facilitation of informal carers.
  • The steel scales.

Next collective agreement consultation

Achmea and De Unie will discuss the various subjects that are part of the collective labor agreement negotiations on 28 November 2019.

Think along!

Prior to this consultation will De Unie prepare the following items:

  • We draw up a list of preconditions that must be completed prior to the introduction of the 34-hour working week.
  • We decide, in consultation with the other trade unions, whether we want to discuss the pension agreement in these collective labor agreement negotiations.

If you would like to contribute ideas on either topic, please contact me, advocate Inge de Vries.

You can reach me by sending an email to: or call 06-5252 2091.