'Spectacular' severance pay deal betters private sector

A VOLUNTARY severance package offered by the States is 'spectacularly generous' and superior to anything workers in the private sector could expect, business leaders have said.

A VOLUNTARY severance package offered by the States is 'spectacularly generous' and superior to anything workers in the private sector could expect, business leaders have said.

And unions have admitted that neither they, nor their members, have any idea what the Policy Council is trying to achieve through its offer.

Representatives of various workforce groups insist that they remain in the dark over the targets of the severance programme and where savings are expected.

Despite the confusion, staff have shown significant interest in the deal, which would pay five weeks' salary for every year of service.

Chamber of Commerce president Rupert Dorey, pictured, described the package as spectacularly generous.

Comments for: "'Spectacular' severance pay deal betters private sector"

Disgruntled

I seem to remember that when Woolworths closed making all staff redundant the States said, nothing we can do no laws about redundancy here.

So the question is why not decide who you need to keep for efficient running get rid of the unproductive at no cost to the poor old taxpayer who will foot the bill once again.

Good question from the union for once what are the trying to achive do they or anyone else have a clue?

Civil Servant

Difference here this ia a voluntary redunancy package and not because a company has gone bust.

mrspinthepantry

Typical 'don't have a clue about the real world' civil servant response.

"Difference here this ia(?) a voluntary redunancy[sic] package and not because a company has gone bust."

If a company has gone bust, there is no money!

P.S. You nearly managed to spell reDUNCEancy package, that would have been quite apt darhling!

Disgruntled

Company went bust as you put it due to mismanagement / incompetent management as we have seen in states departments.

Unfortunately SOG would not go bust the long suffering public would just pick up the bill through higher taxation as we would no doubt still retain zero 10.

Devil's Advocate

It's invariably better to have people leave willingly rather than being pushed - sacking people upsets their colleagues and creates an atmosphere of discontent, at which point you risk losing good members of staff who feel under pressure and would be better off elsewhere. If you have a team of 2 people doing the same job and both apply then you can choose to lose the weakest one with running the risk of an unfair dismissal case which will incur legal costs even if the employer wins. Don't forget that the States have massive pension liabilities - if they can dump staff now and take replacements on in the future on a less costly scheme then it is sensible in the long run.

damo

I wonder if the package was worked out by someone who has been there 30 years and is approaching retirement age?

30years x 5weeks = 150 weeks (basically three uears salary)

Madness, sheer madness. How on earth is the states going to hide that figure in 'our' accounts.

Woody

Maximum is 20 years service for this redundancy package, so just under 2 years salary is the max

Slick

Can someone please explain as to how 5 weeks pay per year of service was arrived at? The private sector average is one week only. Who is paying for the generous 5 redundancy pay? The same private sector employees receiving only one week?

Can unemployment benefit be paid to those taking voluntary redundancy?

Once again a States department has launched itself into an idea with absolutely no idea of the outcome. Let's hope that following the voluntary redundancies the States do not have to re-employ at a higher pay level to fill necessary open positions in the future

Civil Servant

You can't get another job in the States for three years without paying back the money.

zanetac

Bet you can as a 'consultant'.

Guernseyman

Where do you get the data on the private sector = on average only 1 week per year of service?

You do know 86% of statistics are made up on the spot?!

binou

When private sector CEOs and directors get huge payouts, stock options and bonuses, it's "market forces", when public sector get a poor deal (nothing spectacular about non pensoniable severance payment of 2 years for someone who's worked in the civil service for 20 years with no pension enhancement- the UK offered better actually), the same people call it "spectacularly generous and superior to what the private sector could expect".

It may be more honest for Mr Dorey to say "I wouldn't leave for such a pittance, but I wouldn't possibly give my staff more than a kick up the backside to get rid of them"...

Dave

You're talking about a tiny percentage of private sector workers, the States are talking about their entire, overpaid, under worked and overstaffed employees. Overstaffed and under worked can't be argued, or they wouldn't be getting rid of them.

kevin

The main reason the States are having to look at cutting their workforce is to save a small percentage of the money given away to private sector companies( and therefore indirectly to their overpaid directors and employees) through zero-ten.

VOR

This is a very good point. The minister of T&R Gavin St Pierre is one such example. A millionaire made good due to the finance sector - who now appears to be blaming the public sector for all the ills of this island! Shame on you.

Veridique

Dave-

Would you clean up peoples fag ends through town for under a tenner an hour. I doubt it. In future engage your brain before you type.

damo

you said CEO's and directors...how many are there per large private sector employer?

A tiny proportion of the workforce!

Dave

The States have always avoided bringing in a fair redundancy law for employees. When it comes to their own workers they offer them just about as generous a deal imaginable. How come up until even this year, the States have been increasing their workforce, at a time most others are shrinking theirs? Now to get rid of them they are going to gift them millions of Pounds, from the taxes of those who have no such safeguards from redundancy. It says everything about our incompetent States.

Civil Servant

Another day and another article having a pop at Civil Servants.

kevin

Business as usual - States bashing obviously sells newspapers!

Carlos

Because you are the biggest drain on the Taxpayer in the island and spectacularly self serving incompetents.

You are bleeding the private sector taxpayer dry, why not form a committee and several overlapping teams with no accountability to discuss?

Metric Anvil

Carlos

The coherent parts of your contribution to this forum have no basis in fact whatsoever. I'd ask you to back up your assumptions with some facts but you can't can you?

Carlos

Please help with some facts then.

Can you provide some details on the savings made by the civil service in improving efficiencies in your working practices (that does not mean cutting services).

Introducing accountability,removing duplication of effort by numerous teams or splitting processes down to create multiple teams.

Streamlining business processes that provide the required service for the user rather than the provider?

If you can accomplish this then you might actually have some credibility.

I would suggest the perception I have of the Civil Service is that held by many not in it.

The onus is on you to prove me wrong, your not exactly renowned for being forward thinking, open and accountable.

You need to justify yourselves to the taxpayer as they are the ones paying for it!

kevin

Carlos,

Seeing as life as a Civil Servant is so easy maybe you want to consider joining up?

Or are you just earning too much money and pocketing a nice bonus in the private sector?

As with so many anti Civil Servants more likely the latter I suspect.

Carlos

Don't think I would fit in very well ;-)

And I wish!

Civil Servant

So every Civil Servant is incompetent eh? Whilst there may well be some out there like that, some of us are quite proud of the service we offer.

Carlos

Not every one mainly the ones in charge! The decision makers seem more focused on self preservation and empire building than the service delivered to the users.

I have no doubt that the majority of civil servants try to do a good job, I also have no doubt that the majority are aware that they could be run a lot more efficiently and effectively but that might mean some of you lose jobs.

I suspect that is why such a tasty pay off s being offered.

If you offer to go and it is quietly accepted and off you toddle nobody asks why a team or job existed!

If it was not required and can't be justified what have the management team been doing?

Metric Anvil

Made me laugh when the Channel TV presenter stated that the GP still maintain their unbiased reporting principles after 200yrs. Peter Roffeys lesson in hypocrisy made me ROFLOL.

Here's how it should be done: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jul/02/rein-top-pay-mps-poor-furious

It's comment - not news....

Gsyman

What exactly are the SOG trying to achieve here? If there is overstaffing, just go ahead and make people redundant if the jobs no longer exist. This happens every day in the private sector. Unpleasant for those made redundant, and their families, but it seems to be a sword of damocles hanging over many people working these days.

Spartacus

I suspect what they are trying to achieve is staff turnover.

Firstly, salaries became inflated over the years due to competition with finance sector and buoyant employee market. This has now changed or is changing.

Secondly, this exercise will separate wheat and chaff meaning those who have become stale in their jobs but are hard to get rid of might leave.

Thirdly, the Public sector pension scheme has been under review and this proposal might persuade some under the old scheme to leave to be replaced by employees under the new scheme.

It is a good idea in principle but I hope they don't cause chaos to services in the process.

Spartacus

The states are calling this voluntary severance and have clarified that it is not redundancy.

That is very relevant.

Redundancy means the employee is not needed because there is no work for them. Severance means the work is there but the individual employee is let go and may be replaced.

Dave

Will People who take this very generous severance package, have to wait until 65 to get a Civil Service Pension?

Will they get another Lump Sum?

Which numpty worked the package out, if in the private sector it is only 1 week per year?

Civil Servant

It is my understanding that their pension is unaffected so yes they will have to wait until they reach their pension age to get anything from it and nothing else will be put in their pension as they have left the employment of SOG.

I do like how Rupert said everyone will be applying for it, well where I work I haven't heard of anyone actually applying for it.

Carlos

Which clearly shows what a cushy number you are all on. Why jump off the Gravy Train, you might have to live in the real world!

Civil Servant

What because I enjoy my job and believe I do my bit for the SOG? I worked for many years in the private sector.

Guernseyman

Private sector isn't only 1 week per year of service, which idiot made that up.

I was made redundant in 2010 and it was 4 weeks per year for the first 10 years service and 3 weeks for every year after that capped at 104 weeks.

NOt as good as this deal yes but nowhere near as misleading as 1 week per year ....

Supreme Dalek

I agree. I entered a voluntary severance in the private sector in 2009 and was offered a package that, all things considered, was pretty much on par with what is being offered to Civil Servants.

Beanjar

Guernseyman, the UK government was "the idiot" who introduced a statutory minimum of one week per year of service. But apparently, we are not even entitled to that in Guernsey.

Don

You just don't seem to understand - this is the biggest firm on the Island - with the biggest number of customers paying their contributions each week - so why not be seen as the biggest in every regard?

island girl

Its a bit flippant for Rupert Dorey to assume that "all states employees will apply" i certainly won't be and have yet to come across anyone who will be applying. i really cant see employees taking up an offer of max 2 years salary unless they are close to retirement, have little or no mortgage/rent to pay and no dependants. applications must be in by September 2013 but you cannot leave until December 2013 which means any other jobs applied for prior to putting in your voluntary redundancy application would then have to wait for you for around 3 months which i cannot see happening. the job market at present is really not that buoyant unless you want to work in finance ( and we have people being made redundant in that sector at present) many people working for the civil service have experience in their field i.e. medical which probably cannot be easily replaced. if employees do go it will likely leave lots of departments in a bigger mess than we are already, contrary to the false information continually being pushed by the media we are not on fantastic salaries, we don't sit around all day twiddling our thumbs and are pretty fed up with misinformed comments such as that from Dave above.

Neil Forman

island girl

I have spoken to some front line States employees who have volunteered to take the redundancy package and have been told that they cannot as they would have to be replaced.

Whilst I see the logic in this it seems to be an admission that there are jobs that are 'redundant'.

We keep hearing that there is a plan B, so is the next move forced redundancy? This could be a nightmare as there are guidelines to be followed when making people redundant.

Guernseyman

then they are being told wrongly. The decision to accept or decline their application is done by a panel not their manager

Davey west

Case senario.

Working in the public sector for twenty two years, one year to go before retirement.

Now shall I wait one year to retire, or retire now and pocket five weeks pay per year for twenty two years.

Let us hope that the powers that be in the Government or employment board can chose who will go and who will stay.

Wooooooop's

guernseyal

I wonder how many people will come back under the guise of consultants or self employed. Another trick used is to take someone on for a 6 month stint as a temp - thereby not actually putting anybody on the payroll and then "re-employ" them every 6 months (was offered to me once!).

blondie

Wow - this is a very generous package. When the company I work for were making redundancies, the long term staff weren't offered it because they were too expensive to get rid of.

Ex. senior manager on £60k per year, been with the company 18 years etc etc - starts to get expensive.

That said, hopefully the bean counters at the States have worked out that there are bigger savings by offering this now?????

Devil's Advocate

It will give more certainty for the pension scheme. It's much easier to budget when you know the scheme's liabilities. I suspect staff numbers will drop now then creep back up as new staff are taken on under a less-generous pension scheme.

Futu

It irks me to say it, but I'm with Sparty's view of this.

Whether this grand scheme will assist in avoiding the oncoming disaster that is the pension scheme (see Post Office - Guernsey Leccy to follow shortly) is anyone's guess.

Steven Charles

Lets leave the States workers out of this and concentrate on the States please. Do you not realise what is happening here. This will result in a mass out-sourcing of work - we have all seen what happens to tendering, Perelle wall for example - as we no longer have the staff to cope, and who will be left to pick up the bill? youve guessed it the good old taxpayer. This is short term reduction of staff for mass payment which will result in more payment when private sector firms are invited to tender for the work. Its like the good old chestnut of selling the family silver - states properties - forget about the rent coming in lets just grab a one-off payment and forget the rest

Masetorq

I'm presuming someone at T&R has done the sums and has worked out that over the next n years this is actually going to save money? Naive of me maybe?

What would be wrong in instigating a zero growth policy? (and actually sticking to it)

People retire from the Civil Service or leave for pastures new every week. Would it be difficult to rejig departments and re-evalutate posts after people have 'naturally' left?

Pete

As usual when States employees are the subject many who post display a profound ignorance of the situation.

For a start they don't know that Manual Workers and Civil Servant are two separate groups of States employees with totally different pay and conditions.

They'll all just lumped together as a lazy useless overpaid over manned bunch of parasites, yawn yawn. Yes I've just got bored of it.

B*llsh*t_an_Fag_ends

I don't think that's the case at all, Pete.

When the manual workers were offered that pathetic payrise recently, most people came out in support of the manual workers, including myself, who sees them as very hardworking chaps working doing all the cr*ppy jobs for not much remuneration.

- had the civil servants done likewise, I think the public response may have been rather different.

Before one makes hugely sweeping statements about the ignorance of others, Pete, it's wise to ensure that one is not displaying the same level of incomprehension oneself.

Island Wide Voting

Quite