CLA negotiations at Aegon
June 18, 2020
June 10, 2020 De Unie started with collective bargaining at Aegon. The employer took the time to properly explain the background to the reorganisations that Aegon is implementing. There has been a real emphasis on the need for the company to restructure.
Financial insight at Aegon
In addition to the discussion about announced reorganisations, the consequences for Aegon of the lockdown measures were also discussed. Aegon has provided an indication of the business units that are likely to produce more negative results. According to the employer, the seriousness of the situation will partly depend on the pace at which the economy will get going again. This is in line with the expectations of the DNB. DNB estimates that the lockdown will cause considerable damage to the economy. However, no specific expectations could yet be expressed about the consequences for Aegon.
CLA negotiations often start with a discussion about the company's financial situation. The message was really that the structural costs should not increase. De Unie wants to align with Aegon's economic situation with the collective labor agreement negotiations. It is therefore important to properly assess Aegon's situation.
House in order
A number of issues have been brought together under this part of the negotiating agenda:
- One uniform working time
In the previous negotiations it was agreed to investigate the possibility of a return to uniform working hours. This is a simplification and thus a saving for the employer. You can now choose from four full-time working hours arrangements: 40 hours, 38 hours, 36 hours or 38/40 hours. The research has shown that we are able to convert all employment contracts into an appointment based on 40 hours. Of course you will actually continue to work the same number of hours and you will not lose out financially. Aegon would like to lay down this system in the collective labor agreement. From De Unie is in principle no objection to this.
- Global Grading
Global Grading is the job grading system used internationally by large parts of the Aegon organization. In the Netherlands, Aegon uses a different job evaluation system, but Aegon would like to connect with international practice. In collective bargaining will De Unie agree on guarantees. The introduction of a new job evaluation system often leads to employees becoming superscale.
- Harmonization wage structure
At Aegon Group, different salary scales are used for some of the positions than at Aegon NL. The employer wants to determine these higher wage scales of Aegon Group at the level of Aegon NL. In the collective labor agreement consultations we discuss whether this is a desirable development, and we discuss what the consequences are for the employees involved and what is reasonable. A few years ago, many of the Aegon Group functions were already harmonized with Aegon NL. It seems logical to use the same agreements again.
- Other topics
Other topics discussed include the awareness of collective labor agreements, agreements about working from home and a sabbatical scheme. We are talking to the employer about these subjects for the first time. Trade unions on the one hand and employer on the other have expressed their opinion on this.
The employer has proposed to conduct a pilot on working with unlimited leave. The idea of unlimited leave is that the leave schemes are scrapped, employees who participate in the pilot take as much leave as they think they need, but at least the statutory leave of 4 times the weekly working hours.
It is difficult to estimate whether the employees of Aegon are waiting for this innovation, but a pilot that employees voluntarily participate in is not in itself problematic.
The employer has compared the costs of Aegon's social plan with the costs of other insurers. Aegon's social plan is demonstrably more expensive. The employer has already promised that the current social plan will be applied for reorganisations related to Papillon. What De Unie we will extend these agreements to all reorganisations that will be implemented during this period. Otherwise, there is no equal treatment. If Aegon wants to make agreements about making the social plan cheaper, this could only take effect after July 1, 2022.
Next consultation and contact
CLA negotiations will continue on Monday, June 22. Questions can be put to the advocate Inge de vries. She can be reached by e-mail: inge.de.Vries@unie.nl or tel: 06 5252 2091