In a letter to the trade unions, ING stated that it was suffering from low interest rates, high risk costs and the economic downturn caused by the corona crisis, also in the longer term. In addition, ING believes that from now on the wages of staff should ‘move more emphatically’ with the economic situation.
Especially because the average salary at the bank would be ‘still well above the benchmark in the financial and technology sector’. The annual appraisal interview at which a higher salary is determined should disappear in the new CLA.
The unions reacted outraged on Friday about ING’s collective labor agreement proposal. ‘Totally unrealistic’, says Gerard van Hees of FNV Finance, describes the bank’s wish: “ING is still making a profit and we also find the explanation of why a zero line is needed insufficient. The low interest is related to the earnings model. A bank must find an answer to this itself. You should not arrange that through the terms of employment. ”
When the existing collective labor agreement expired at the end of this year, ING Netherlands was still overloaded with compliments from the trade unions. Extra days off for self-development and parental leave for fathers was called groundbreaking at the time. In a response, ING said that this collective labor agreement was also developed in the light of the then economic heyday. “We were more prosperous then than now,” emphasizes a spokesman.
The unions do understand ING’s point about rising risk costs. “The banks now have to deal with a larger straw pot,” Van Hees admits. “Especially now that branches such as the hotel and catering industry and the travel industry are in trouble because of the crisis, they are suffering from it.”
ING is primarily committed to more self-development of employees. Staff would be given their own budget, which they could use themselves for, for example, a travel allowance or a better workplace at home. ING expects that staff will continue to work from home 40% or half of their working hours even after the corona situation.
FNV itself advocates a one-year collective labor agreement due to uncertain times, but with a wage requirement of 5%. Van Hees: “To keep the economy running, a substantial wage increase is necessary. We must prevent the drama of wage moderation after the credit crisis, the Netherlands being the last to emerge in the European context. ”
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