Pembroke Dock Jobcentre Plus Call Centre Picket Line
18th April 2011Alec Thraves spoke to Sian Thomas, PCS branch organiser at Pembroke Dock (South West Wales) call centre.
‘Around 85% have responded to our strike today which is an indication of how strongly our members feel about our deteriorating working conditions. We want genuine access to flexi time; we want an end to the unrealistic monitoring that’s taking place at the moment and we want to be able to provide a good customer service. There’s loads of pressure on staff, particularly with the excessive monitoring that try and force us to reach unrealistic targets. Today has been a big success but hopefully we can move on and have coordinated action with other unions, working towards a one day public sector general strike’.
Another picket explained that management are only interested in reaching government targets even at the cost of good customer service: -
‘When I am dealing with customers and its coming close to my three minute allocation time, I know my call may be monitored and listened to, so I tell them that I will be unable to complete their query as I am only allowed three minutes to speak to them otherwise I could get disciplined. This is the type of barbaric, uncompromising regime being forced upon us and it is preventing us from doing our job efficiently and sympathetically’.
Because the strike was so well supported and there were very few cars entering the call centre, the branch organiser kept herself busy by cooking up BBQ sausage and bacon rolls for some extremely grateful PCS pickets and Socialist Party members. As one of the pickets commented - PCS has taken on a new meaning from today Pickets Cooking Sausages!