More job evaluators promised
by Bernard Harbor
|The union says the success rate has so far been high, although the waiting times for completion of the process is also long due to huge pent-up demand.|
Health service management has agreed that more evaluators will be trained over the coming month to deal with the high demand for job evaluations.
At a recent meeting between Fórsa and the HSE’s Job Evaluation Board, health officials conceded that the current waiting time for processing applications was between six and nine months. The union is exploring ways of speeding up the process and keeping applicants informed of progress.
Fórsa has trained a good number of union reps to participate in evaluations, and its officials have been encouraged by the high number of applications to the reactivated job evaluation scheme, which opened last year on foot of the union’s campaign.
The union says the success rate has so far been high, although the waiting times for completion of the process is also long due to huge pent-up demand.
Fórsa official Catherine Keogh said the eight-year suspension of the scheme had created a large backlog of existing and potential applications from workers who have taken on substantial extra responsibilities as clerical and admin staff numbers fell dramatically during the crisis.
“The waiting time for an evaluation is currently too high, although well over half of cases completed so far have led to an upgrading. Neither of these things comes as a huge surprise given the freeze on promotion and recruitment over many years,” she said.
In a recent letter to Fórsa branches, Catherine said she had warned senior management that the union’s industrial action mandate remained in place if local managers blocked or obstructed the nationally-agreed scheme.
The scheme, which is open to clerical and administrative grades III to VI, and related grades, offers staff the prospect of an upgrading if their job roles and responsibilities are found to have increased sufficiently.