Shorter hours vote saves JCB jobs

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Employees working at Staffordshire machinery firm JCB have voted to work shorter hours over the next three months to prevent redundancies…

Earlier this month JCB announced it was facing 290 compulsory redundancies in a bid to cut costs. Now, shop floor employees have voted to work shorter hours over the next three months to save jobs.

The first stage of consultations saw the number of redundancies reduce from 290 to 235. However, a flexible working pattern could more than 100 jobs maintained.

The scheme, which will run until the end of February, was proposed by JCB and union GMB. While the number of hours worked will vary according to site, it is expected to be around 34 hours or above, just under the standard working week of 39 hours. Employees can either be paid for the reduced hours worked or be paid the full 39 hour week and work back the hours next year.

JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald said: “Our shop floor colleagues are to be applauded for their actions. JCB and the GMB were determined to do everything possible to avoid compulsory redundancies through a combination of voluntary redundancies, early retirements and flexible working.

“It highlights a great team spirit at JCB and also means we can retain some vitally important skills.”

JCB GMB works convenor Gordon Richardson said: “Our members are to be congratulated on the result of the ballot.

“It’s a magnanimous act which is in the spirit of the approaching festive season and means that over 100 people who were under threat of compulsory redundancy will now have a much happier Christmas.”

The changes will impact JCB’s world headquarters in Rocester, JCB Heavy Products in Uttoxeter, JCB Cab Systems in Riverside, Rugeley and JCB Transmissions in Wrexham.

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