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Staff walkout at Fuji Xerox prompts “Big Brother” climbdown
A walkout by an estimated 250-plus maintenance and repair staff at Fuji Xerox Australia over a proposal to introduce global positioning system (GPS) technology to monitor their whereabouts throughout their working day has prompted the company to shelve the idea, at least for now.Fuji Xerox Australia and the Australian Services Union (ASU) are currently undertaking a re-negotiation of Fuji Xerox’s Customer Support Organisation enterprise agreement. This agreement covers Fuji Xerox’s team of approximately 350 field engineers.As part of this year’s re-negotiation, Fuji Xerox’s suggested including technology in engineers’ laptops or vehicles, a move which it claimed was in order to more easily locate and reclaim laptops or vehicles that were lost or stolen, but the ACS rejected the idea, arguing that such a move would be “excessive.”NSW and ACT branch president of the ASU, Sally McManus, said of the dispute: “We say that Fuji Xerox technicians are already highly monitored and their work performance can be measured in every which way possible. This is just one more step towards ‘Big Brother’ that the members aren’t prepared to take.”George Nides, general manager of Fuji Xerox’s Customer Support Organisation, said in a statement: “Fuji Xerox has no current plans to introduce GPS technology with our engineer workforce’s equipment. Our field engineers receive industry-leading terms and conditions with salaries well above the market rate. We’re very proud of the working environment and culture that Fuji Xerox provides and we want that to continue.”While the company has no plans to force the issue at present, there may be further conflict ahead, with Fuji Xerox refusing to rule out putting the proposal forward again in the future.”At a meeting on AUG 9, the ASU tabled that it would not accept the use of GPS technology within Fuji Xerox’s engineers’ equipment. As a result, FXA has taken this issue off the table for this negotiation. However Fuji Xerox wishes to protect its ability to implement suitable new technologies in the future and not be limited to using out-dated technologies.”The minutes of the meeting reflect this and read as follows: “The intent is not to limit FXA (Fuji Xerox Australia) to outdated technologies. FXA will look at appropriate wording to be included in the CSO EA (Customer Support Organisation Enterprise Agreement) .”Nides concluded: “Fuji Xerox looks forward to continuing successful negotiations with the ASU and discussing all relevant issues.”
Author2006-09-01 at 11:36:00 am
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