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  • 1. INE - OTOE Labour Institute OTOE Athens 2009 DialogoS+ DialogoS+ Evaluation of international experience on social dialogue in respect with changes ensuing the new economy in the banking sector and transfer of best practices to new member countries Funded by: EUROPEAN COMMISSION Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities DG, Adaptability, Social Dialogue and Social Rights, Social dialogue, Industrial relations, Adaptation to change BUDGET HEADING, VP/2007/001/894 1 ISBN 978-960-8428-02-7
  • 2. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Evaluation of international experience on social dialogue in respect with changes ensuing the new economy in the banking sector and transfer of best practices to new member countries ISBN 978-960-8428-02-7 Αthens 2009 © INE - OTOE 9 Vissarionos, 106 72, Αthens 2
  • 3. Index Introduction 5 1. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 7 Summary 8 National Best Practices and Challenges 10 Denmark 10 Spain 14 Ιtaly 18 Greece 24 Portugal 28 Μalta 31 Cyprus 36 Βulgaria 39 Romania 42 Conclusion 45 2. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise 47 Executive Summary 48 Introduction 49 Overall Aims of the DialogoS+ Project 49 Scope and Motivation of this Report 51 Banking Sector State-of-the-Art: the Crisis and the Challenges 52 Roadmapping: Definitions and DialogoS+ Methodology 54 Introduction to Roadmapping 54 Roadmapping Methodology for DialogoS+ 59 Roadmap Thematic Areas 63 Working Life in the Banking Sector 63 Foreign Ownership, Mergers and Acquisitions 64 Public Support and Industrial Actions 66 Union Density Rates 68 Collective Bargaining and Union Impact at Negotiation Levels 70 European Union Dialogue and Convergence 71 Concluding Remarks and Next Steps 73 References 74 3
  • 4. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ DialogoS+ Project Partners Project Coordinator: INE - OTOE (Labour Institute OTOE) Partners: OTOE (Hellenic Federation of Bank Employee Unions) FABI (Independent Federation of Italian Bank Workers) - Ιtaly Federacion de Servicios de UGT (FeS-UGT) - Spain Sindicato Dos Bancarios do Centro Direccao - Portugal ΕΤΥΚ (Cyprus Union of Bank Employees) Malta Union of Bank Employees - Μalta FSAB (TUFIB) - Romania Trade Union of the Bank Employees and Workers in UBB - Bulgaria Finance Sector Union of Denmark - Denmark Vocational Training Centre DIASTASI - Greece SEV (Hellenic Federations of Enterprises) - Greece Brunel University - United Kingdom Εdited by: Αristoteles Lakkas Panagiotis Panagiotopoulos Ιoanna Theochari The views expressed and the information contained in this publication does not necessarily reflect the position or opinion of the European Commission, or the position or opinion of the national partners of the project. The views expressed are the authors’ views. 4
  • 5. Introduction Introduction Social Dialogue is considered a driving force for economic and social reform, a key to better governance of the now enlarged European Union and a vital element of the European Social Model. This report examines the best practices of social dialogue in nine EU member states’ banking sector, aiming at developing a comparative perspective. It draws on extensive participatory training developed by the DialogoS+ project partners just before the eruption of the global financial crisis. These social dialogue experiences become more valuable under the new conditions of the ongoing financial crisis which also affect employment relations in the banking sectors. On behalf of INE/OTOE, we would like to thank all participant trade unions and their representatives for their active and productive way in shaping the development of the DialogoS+ project that helps to identify social dialogue best practices in the banking sectors at national level and highlight how they can help us in meeting the new challenges. Stavros Κoukos Αristoteles Lakkas President OTOE Managing Director ΙΝΕ - ΟΤΟΕ President INE - OTOE 5
  • 6. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 6
  • 7. 1. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges Dr Christos Α. Ιoannou Report for INE - OTOE prepared for the project DialogoS+ 7
  • 8. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Summary By analysing recent developments in ‘national’ banking sector systems from a comparative perspective with regard to social dialogue practices we have drawn interesting conclusions concerning the different degrees and the different stages of social dialogue in regulating banking sector employment relations in nine EU member states. This analysis and the comparison of different national systems of employment regulation in banking sectors, are based on contributions provided by the • Federazione Autonoma Bancari Italiani (FABI), • Federacion de Servicios de UGT (FeS-UGT) Spain, • Sindicato Dos Bancarios do Centro, (SBC) Portugal, • Cyprus Union of Bank Employees (ETYK), • Malta Union of Bank Employees ( MUBE ), • Trade Union of the Bank Employees and Workers in UBB AD, Bulgaria, • Federatia Sindicatelor din Asigurari si Banci, România • Finansforbundet, Finance Sector Union, Denmark, • Greek Federation of Bank Employee Unions ( OTOE), lead us to classify them, for analytical reasons, in four groups. The first group of ‘Best Practices’ refers to three ‘old’ member states namely Denmark, Spain, and Italy. Their common characteristic is the relatively strong role of collective bargaining in shaping effective social dialogue in the banking sector. In Spain we consider as best practice the regulation of M&As implications through collective agreements that produced results embodied in the case of early retirement law for bank employees made redundant in the banking sector restructuring process. In Italy we consider as best practice the regulation of banking restructuring implications through collective agreements that were regulated through the innovative and collectively agreed and operated ‘income support fund’. In Denmark we consider as best practice the joint regulation of banks and insurance sectors and the strong influence of social dialogue in shaping the ‘flexicurity’ solutions in the banking sector. The second group of national experiences refers to social dialogue challenges rather than to ‘Best Practices’, in the sense that the pre-existing pathway of developing social dialogue is challenged. These challenges emerged in the case of two ‘old’ member states, namely Portugal and Greece, were their common theme is the emerging challenge to sectoral collective bargaining as a mean for effective social dialogue. 8
  • 9. The third group of national experiences refers to best practices of social dialogue that emerged in two ‘new’ member states, namely Cyprus and Malta, where the influence of the national unions acting in the banking sector enhanced social dialogue as a means for regulating employment relations and more specifically in dealing with “new comers” in the sector (through Mergers & Acquisitions) by maintaining union membership and effective role for social dialogue. The fourth group of national experiences refers to challenges faced by developing national unions in two ‘new’ member states, namely Bulgaria and Romania, were their common theme refers to the challenge of building social dialogue capacity through increasing membership and establishing sectoral collective agreements. 9
  • 10. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ National Best Practices and Challenges Denmark The key topic for Denmark is the strong role of collective bargaining. Therefore it appears a common theme between Spain, Italy and Denmark with regard to the strong role of collective bargaining 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. Employment dropped slightly from 2002 to 2004. Since 2004 there has been a rather significant rise until 2007. No statistical data are yet available for 2008. Banks and Mortgage credit Insurance Total savings banks institutions companies 2002 41.613 4.174 16.972 62.759 2003 40.950 4.268 16.780 61.998 2004 40.833 4.040 16.713 61.585 2005 41.364 4.081 17.709 63.154 2006 43.270 4.151 18.155 65.575 2007 44.284 4.088 18.617 66.989 Looking at the above mentioned factors, most of the M & A activities have been between fairly small financial institutions with rather low impact on employment level. The development of e.g. technology has not been characterised by sudden shocks. Looking at the cross border level, Nordea Bank has changed its structure at the Nordic level and Danske Bank has acquired foreign banks, most notably Northern Irish. The chart below shows the unemployment rate for the members of Finansforbundet. As explained above, during the period in question this also illustrates a slight rise and a significant drop in unemployment. This also shows that since 1992 unemployment in the sector has not been lower than in 2008. 10
  • 11. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges Kilde: FTF-A (02/04-2008) (Explanation: “Kvinder” = Women, “Mænd” = Men, “I alt” = Total). As far as prospects for the future are concerned, however, it was generally assumed, before the coming of the financial crisis that the economy in the sector will slow somewhat down in the coming years. Even though the international subprime crisis has not hit the Danish financial sector as hard as the case is in many other countries, the financial turmoil has taken its toll. At the end of the day, this could lead to a rise in unemployment. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. All in all, a majority of the Danish banking sector structure is regulated through collective agreements, which are being adjusted from time to time in connection with the collective bargaining process. There has been regulation through a combination of measures, including bargaining, information and consultation. Some of the EU legislation has been implemented through general legislation and some more specific sectoral issues through agreements. 11
  • 12. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. Social dialogue is primarily evolving through collective bargaining agreements. These are rather detailed and give a solid foundation for thorough debating between employer and employee representatives. Legislation has been used to a smaller extent, but this is mainly in the area of working environment where the rules on dialogue between employer and employees are laid down in the Working Environment Act. Also, the rules on employee representation on the boards of companies are contained in the Act on Public Limited Companies. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. The role and influence of Sectoral Trade Unions is strong. The work councils play a central part and also the employee representatives on the company board. Also both central and decentralised trade union officers have been engaged in the work. Finansforbundet have developed specific procedures for e.g. merger situations, including a manual for transnational mergers which has been translated into English and can be used as a ‘guideline’ by other national unions. 5. The most important Challenges. Finansforbundet considers that Mergers & Acquisitions may be a large challenge in the future, especially at the cross border level. Outsourcing of e.g. IT is another important challenge. These two issues were the main concerns before the global financial crisis. 6. The preferred role for Social dialogue. Finansforbundet consider that there are many aspects concerning the preferred role for Social dialogue. A few could be 1) to optimise the influence of employee representatives through relevant education and 2) improving and optimising the existing regulatory framework. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. Finansforbundet consider that all aspects of modern employment relations are areas of interest. It is not possible to generalise and pinpoint one or more specific topics as “winners”. Therefore Social Dialogue, in the ‘mature’ Danish context is considered as the main tool for regulation. 12
  • 13. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. Finansforbundet consider that there are no real barriers to social dialogue. In general, the biggest challenge is to keep modernising the framework of social dialogue to keep up with the developments in an ever changing world of finance. That was the Finansforbundet suggestion just before the eruption of the global financial crisis. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. Finansforbundet considered that during the latest five years (2003-2008) there have been mostly relatively small adjustments in the Danish banking sector and that explains that there had been very little public debate in recent years. But a rise in Mergers & Acquisitions activities and further the implications of the global financial crisis would call for more active union role in the public debate. 13
  • 14. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Spain The key topic for Spain is the strong role of collective bargaining. As best practice we identified the regulation of the implications of Mergers & Acquisitions through collective agreements with special reference in the case of the “early retirement law”. It is part of the common theme between Spain, Italy and Denmark which refers to the strong role of collective bargaining. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. In Spain there has been wide experience about changes in the banking sector due to Mergers, Acquisitions and privatizations. Changes due to new technologies applications have had a less important influence. On workforce changes for the union UGT it is clear that Mergers & Acquisitions have the main purpose of reducing costs by reducing personnel. In Spain, this resulted in employment cuts from 121.500 banking employees in the year 2000 to 110.500 in 2008. The process of concentration resulted in a structure of 147 different bank firms (75 National and 72 international) and 6 bank groups, Santander, BBVA, Popular, Sabadell, Barclays and Deutsche Bank. This phenomenon has not ended, and the recent trend has been branch outsourcing like a franchise. The major challenges through mergers in Spain have been: • In 1999 when Santander merged and absorbed progressively BCH under the new name SCH. This resulted in employment cuts from 31.000 employees in 1999 to 21.000 in 2007 (without counting the broader group). • In 2000 BV merged and absorbed Argentaria (Former public banks holding) under the new name BBVA. This resulted to employment cuts, from 37.000 employees in 2000 to 31.000 in 2007. Further in Santander, there has been an expectation of 1.000 early retirements for 2008 and a further 2000 in BBVA. In Spain and by agreement with major unions UGT and CCOO, the job losses in the workforce are regulated by means of early retirements, with a percentage salary that runs from 83% gross income, and 52 years age in BBVA, and 90% and 50 years age in Santander. 14
  • 15. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. In Spain all changes have been agreed between banks and unions, mainly with UGT and CCOO unions, which represent 78% of membership in the sector. In Spain the repre- sentation and bargaining rights are provided by the “Estatuto de los trabajadores” (general labour law) and is supplemented by the National Collective Banking Sector Agreement. Separate agreements can be signed at bank level. In the same line, the Spanish Ministry of Employment respects social dialogue by not interfering in the negotiations. Apart from collective bargaining, the other main type of social dialogue which took place in these major developments with Spanish trade unions was information and consultation procedures. 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. In the Spanish banking sector the main tool for employment relation’s regulation remains collective bargaining. In addition to EU and national labour laws that apply in Spain and enhance social dialogue procedures, all restructuring processes and loss of jobs, are mainly treated in the frame of NCBSA (Sectoral collective agreement). Also, national experience suggests that banks prefer to deal with their social partner, the trade unions. The Patronal employers association and the confederations of UGT and CCOO sign the national employ- ment agreement, ANC, in the many last years. This agreement regulates labour market aspects and salary increase along with working life issues and is binding for all their affiliates. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. In the Spanish banking sector, the type of representative bodies and organs though which the social dialogue processes are evolving, normally are the Federations represented by the national sector federal secretary (it is noteworthy that in the period of the project a woman colleague Mrs. Torronteras). On the other side of the bargaining table there is the employers association, AEB, in representation of the banks. Also, at the company level operate the European Works Councils. At the national level there is a sector secretariat depending on the FeS-UGT with a national sector secretary that deals “monitoring” the banking sector industrial relations. 5. The most important Challenges. As the most important challenges in the future development of the banking sector in Spain is considered the unionisation growth. This is related to the current trend of outsourcing the traditional work of bank employees that is transferred to service companies (which are 100% bank subsidiaries) with relatively worse employment conditions for workers and no union rights recognized. In that sense of special significance is the case of Santander, 15
  • 16. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ with a holding of externalized companies (such as Sercoban, Produban, Gesban, Geoban, Inverban) that also receive work from subsidiaries, while office branches “suffer” a lack of personnel, and while central departments are ‘emptied’. Even payroll and part of HR is outsourced. For the Spanish unions, the employment level is also a major challenge, which is subject to pressure by the bank’s total orientation to short term business targets, bad work organization and the future concerns of new M & As. Spanish unions in BBVA “fear” about administrative jobs to disappear, along with central departments. 6. The preferred role for Social dialogue. Spanish unions consider the social dialogue process itself a main objective. In this context, they feel confident in the way the sector is reacting to changes, with the main role of collective bargaining, and through the dialogue with the employers association AEB. They consider also that according to the information and consultation rights amplification of article 64 of the E.T (worker’s statute) they could have better opportunities. The aim for the Spanish unions is to strengthen the level of social dialogue at the company level and get their fellow workers to realise the benefits and importance of social dialogue as a mean to find solutions. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. Spanish unions would like to see more effective influence of social dialogue in policy areas like gender equality agreements in the banks. This trend is developing in the sector, and they plan to have agreements in all banks, including professional career and gender “floors” i.e. breaking the glass ceiling in women’s career development. In training also, social dialogue has a role with the creation and operation of joint observatories and commissions between bank’s H.R and unions. Life long learning and work-life balance agreements are also signed at company level. There is an increasing need for awareness in order to disseminate the contents and use of these new rights. Also inside themselves the unions prepare their representatives about the day to day incidence and monitoring in these new policy areas. The banking sector in Spain is self-regulating the flow of employment needed. What is a real new trend is the substitution of older employees by young. The side effects of this is whether they are more unionised, they have higher salaries, and that the experience in not considered anymore an advantage, but the knowledge of new techniques of sales and marketing. HR functions change. Commercial departments are selecting people, instead of former HR departments. More and more companies apply overtime, which older employees refuse to do. Another future trend to be considered is the increasing telemarketing work that operates outside the departments and branches. 16
  • 17. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. Spanish trade unions do not consider that there are real barriers to social dialogue in the banking sector. This is attributed to the significance of existing regulations and to the fact that restructuring is also regulated by the law, and therefore employers have to take into account the approval of the unions, and of the Labour Ministry. Nevertheless, this does not imply the lack of possibilities that banks in their effort to reduce operating costs may adopt more aggressive initiatives. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. In Spain, the unions (UGT) consider that there is a perception, still, in the general public that bank employees are some kind of privileged employees. They also consider that the media create for banks and employees not a good image, by criticising the commissions charged and the relevant costs. UGT consider that the employers Association (AEB) prefers that the possible problems should be treated internally, without publicity. UGT considers they contribute very hard to the social “well-being”. According to the UGT research cabinet, conflict creates a bad impact in members and workforce in general. UGT feel confident that the new provision on consultation rights in the ET article 64 revision would help dialogue. Companies and work councils have to implement these rights, and have a permanent social dialogue with unions and other stakeholders (shareholders, public). UGT considers that past and future trend in this case and for the banking sector is always the same: companies try to avoid or minimize information and unions try to maximize consultation. Union reps need to be prepared and taught in new technologies and communication abilities, otherwise that field should be occupied by banks, creating their “techno-virtual union” with webs, online counselling, and service agency providers. UGT highlighted that in Scamander, as a matter of fact, there is a free toll line to count “your personal life problems” that refrain employees from performing well! 17
  • 18. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Italy The key topic for Italy is the strong role of collective bargaining. As best practice we identified the regulation of banking restructuring implications through collective agree- ments with innovative and collectively agreed tools and among them the “income support fund”. In this sense, it is part of the common theme between Spain, Italy and Denmark which refers to the strong role of collective bargaining. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The present structure of the Italian banking system is the result of a transformation process that started in the beginning of the 1990s. As milestones in this process can be considered the 1997 profitability reduction crisis that was caused by margin of interest crisis and resulted to plans for 30.000 banking employees considered as potentially to be outsourced. To understand the importance of privatisations in the credit sector we have to consider that 1992 the share owned by the state and the institutions almost reached 75%. Between 1993 and 2002 in the Italian banking sector there have been more than 500 mergers that involved nearly half of the banking sector and lead the state share to less than 10%. The transformation of the Italian banking system has had implications in the employment trend which has evolved as follows: 1999: 350.000, 2002: 340.500, 2003: 338.300, 2004: 337.000, 2005: 340.865 employees, of which 299.000 in banks and service companies owned by a banking group, 24.000 financial companies, and 18.000 in independent service companies. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. The transformation process of the Italian banking system has been mainly regulated through collective bargaining and social dialogue. In 1997-1998 there was a Social Agreement between the Italian Government, the Italian Banking Association (ABI) and 9 bank unions. In 1999-2001 followed the agreement for early retirement (5 years) as a way of cutting staff costs. In the same rationale, a National Contract introduced incentive schemes financed by the reduction of overtime work. In 2001-2005, a new relationship was formed in the Italian banking system. In 2006, the exchange of ideas instead of simple information on incentives improved social dialogue and outcomes. In 2007, national negotiations started with ABI for the renewal of the National Collective Agreement. One of the important outcomes of the regulation of changes through collective bargaining and social dialogue, considered as best practice, is the Income Support Fund (“Fondo del Sostegno del Reddito”) the main idea of which is that it allows early retirement 5 years before the normal date at 70% of the salary but at 100% of social security payment. 18
  • 19. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges On July 11th, 1999, the new National Agreement was signed, including the union procedures for the settlement of the occupational spin-offs deriving from mergers or reorganization, involving for the first time the group leader bank, that committed themselves to negotiate with the trade unions and be made responsible of or – if possible – reinstate the redundant workers in another company of the group. In April 2000, the Government issued the institutional decree of the solidarity fund, called also income support fund, providing in its ordinary part the financing of the training courses and the one-year re-conversion for redundant workers for the reinstatement in other sectors or companies with the national agreement of the credit sector. And in its extraordinary part an early retirement plan up to five years before the maturity of the pension requirements. The ordinary part provides a parametrical contribution between the companies and the workers of the system, whereas the costs of early retirement are entirely charged to the company that resorts to it. The early retired worker receives an allowance equal to 70/75% of the last salary, 100% of it is paid, however, into compulsory social security in order to guarantee the worker a pension without great detriments The fund is only accessible through negotiation and a bilateral agreement of both parties: the company and the trade union. The fund’s life was expected to be 10 years to start from July 2000 and was therefore to expire on June 30th, 2010.But the further banking restructuring together with the reform of the Italian pension system (that has raised the pension age from 37 to 40 years of contribution) have led to the Agreement of May 25th, 2005, which ratified the extension of the life of the solidarity fund of the banking sector until June 30th, 2020. 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. In the Italian banking sector, the importance of collective bargaining is highlighted by its dual structure in two levels of negotiations. The 1st level refers to the National Collective Agreement signed by the Italian Banking Association (ABI) and the trade unions. The 2nd level refers to collective bargaining that leads to Company or Group Agreements signed by each company/group and the trade unions. Collective bargaining is supplemented by the information & consultation rights that apply to each company’s union and operate at the headquarters level and at the local/ branch level. The 1st level of collective bargaining and collective agreements deals with issues such as: • Minimum wages • Industrial Relations System • Definition and application of the National Agreement (Contractual Area) • Job evaluation (minimum classifications) • Professional salary 19
  • 20. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ • Seniority salaries • Working hours • Rights and Duties • Rules of transfers • Minimum basic training and rules of continuous training, also with a joint bipartite commission called “ENBICREDITO” • Absences (holidays, illness, family, etc) • Limits, framework and rules about the 2nd level (company) negotiation • Maximum overtime per capita • Rules for individual dismissals The 2nd level of collective bargaining and collective agreements, i.e. the company and group agreements, deal with issues such as: • Variable wages: Company Productivity Premium (known as VAP, value added premium) • Evaluation of professional figures • Safety and health • Training schemes Benefits for all the colleagues: • Additional pension and retirement funds • Medical funds or insurance • Ticket for meals • Mortgages for home, loans, medical expenses etc. The 2nd level of negotiation has been also, in the context of the transformation of the Italian banking sector, enriched with the discussion and exchange of ideas over issues such as: • Occupational problems solved by transfers of groups of workers • Occupational problems for allocating redundant groups of workers in the “Fondo del Sostegno del Reddito” (the Income Support Fund) • Training modules and programs, both basic and continuous • Career advancement opportunities schemes • Evaluation system of each worker (job and results) • Incentive schemes (from 2006 onwards) 20
  • 21. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. The role and influence of sectoral trade unions in the well structured system of collective bargaining operates through employee representation by the 9 trade unions that are present in the sector, where the union density in 2008 is estimated at 70%. Union structures correspond to the national/regional level and also to the group/company level with local, internal representatives. Workers members of each union elect their trade union representatives. The presence of sectoral trade unions is also strong at the 2nd level of negotiations for the company/group collective agreement especially in cases of company or group restructuring. Their role develops through bargaining over issues such as: • Managing redundancies by agreements and social schemes • Allocating redundant groups of workers in the “Fondo del Sostegno del Reddito” (Income Support Fund) • Intragroup labour mobility • Mobility (at local/regional level) and multipolarity, in the sense of spreading company structures throughout the territory, in order to avoid workers’ territorial mobility • New professional’s schemes • Training modules and programs, both basic and continuous. 5. The most important Challenges. As most important challenge, apart from preserving role of trade unions in collective bargaining and in regulation through social dialogue, is considered the training of the banking sector employees and, therefore, training has become a main issue in the Banking sector National Collective Agreement. This has led to the founding of the bilateral commission “Enbicredito” for discussion and approval of company training schemes, as well as to provisions for training rights for four weeks of training for new recruited people, in the first year of employment, and for a minimum of 24 hours per year for continuous training programs totally paid by the bank. Further with company unions agreement it is provided the right to further 26 hours of extra training of which 8 are paid and the rest 18 are not. There are also provisions on training costs for the new allocation for workers outsourced totally paid by “Fondo di Sostegno del Reddito”. 6. The preferred role for Social dialogue. In the structured collective bargaining and social dialogue that operates in the Italian banking system,the further implementation of the right to information and consultation is considered a tool for strengthening the effectiveness of social dialogue at company level. Information/consultation given to Company/Group Trade Unions at headquarters level can help in the effective regulation of: 21
  • 22. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ • Industrial plans for restructuring or new strategies with/without employment implications for banking sector employees, Stock options and stock granting, statistics about recruitment, training, promotions, incentives schemes rules and costs, transfers, overtime work, occupational problems divided by region, gender, professional area • New safety plans, for accident and against crimes, • New branches allocation • New organization plans • Recruitment policies Further information/consultation rights operating at the company unions at the local level can alleviate: • Occupational problems for individual or small groups of workers • Implications of local transfers • Overtime planning • Local occupational health and safety plans • Recruitment policies and new branches launch 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. The social dialogue has a role to play in all old and new issues developed in the above mentioned outline of the social dialogue experience in the Italian banking sector. 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. FABI considers that to avoid any barriers to social dialogue employee representatives should keep their target at the occupational level to issues concerning employment. Employers, because of the financial crisis, face the need to cut costs and the easiest/first option is to cut jobs. As a result, cutting costs in that way directly impacts the banking employees’ situation. Further, individualism is an ‘illness’ of the system. For example, there is the practise of incentive pay/salaries, which is Management by Objective (MBO) practise and one of the reasons that caused the current financial crisis. The result of incentive pays was that the employers had the incentive to sell everything to everyone, causing the disaster we have these days. Banks have been encouraging individualism. As a result, there are in Italy fewer members from Marketing Divisions or Private Banking Divisions because they tend to care less, as they feel they are in key positions. The issue needs to become a priority negotiated by the Unions in the banking sector. 22
  • 23. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. FABI sees liberalism as the main challenge. At the moment, there is no trend towards the “old time” banking system, which is to make savings and use money to invest. The current crisis is a failure of liberalism and the challenge is to abandon this model. Still, some people talk about the need to create new banking products, without understanding how these are related as a cause to the crisis. The challenge is first to face the crisis at national level but there is also need to act jointly to solve the problem at the global level. In terms of intervention, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the European Union have to play a role in the crisis, in collaboration with the Unions. It is certainly a global crisis and there is need to have close cooperation among the Unions 23
  • 24. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Greece The key topic for Greece is the challenge to sectoral collective bargaining as a means for effective social dialogue. This appears to be a common theme between Greece and Portugal. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The Greek banking sector has been since 1997 in a period of rapid transformation. This is clearly a distinctive period from the past. The Greek banking system had been operating till 1987 under strict administrative control. It is in the period 1987-97 that went through emancipation from excessive state controls and started adjusting to European and International standards. The period since 1997 is the period of restructuring through Acquisitions and Mergers. Greek banking is being reshaped by three factors: catch up (in terms of branches - the Greek banking sector is considered under branched -, ATMs per residents, rapidly growing market as banking sector GDP share), competition in a largely deregulated market and the influence of the ongoing European integration, and the privatization of public banks. Until now restructuring in the Greek banking sector has occurred via privatizations and mergers / acquisitions with ownership remaining mainly in domestic hands. Privatisations and mergers and acquisitions, even between publicly controlled banks, have implied major restructuring in the Greek banking sector. The restructuring process has been influenced by the governmental drive to commercialise the banks which are publicly-controlled. In this context, they have installed professional management that operate much more independently than they did in the past, delegated control to publicly- owned pension funds and, more recently, made Board appointments the responsibility of the General Meeting of share-holders of each bank. At some point after 2004, the process of distancing the state-controlled banks from the state was completed through full privatisation. Only two banks (Agricultural Bank and Post Bank) stayed under partial state control. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. The restructuring process of the Greek banking sector has not been coupled with net job losses. Overall, there has been no particular institutional framework for Greece concerning mergers and acquisitions and European Union legislation and directives are applicable. But Mergers and Acquisitions did not result in any redundancies (layoffs), for three reasons. First, the trade union movement intervention has been decisive and effective. Second, the Greek Financial System is not saturated and there has been 24
  • 25. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges a positive political will on behalf of the Government for protection of employment. Third, the existence of strong Labour Regulations at the company level restricts the possi- bilities of collective dismissals. Not surprisingly, net employment growth has been recorded for years. However, some segments of the relatively older and less skilled employees have been affected. 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. Despite the decline in trade-union membership since the mid-80s, and the union represen- tativeness in Greece, the banking sector has remained one sector with the higher trade- union density. The process of privatizations and restructuring in the banking sector has led to conflicts and strong opposition to governmental decisions for mergers and privatizations in the banking sector throughout the late 1990s and in the early 2000s. But social dialogue procedures we may say that survived in the context of mergers and acquisitions in the previously publicly controlled banks. But during the last years, since 2004, are challenged. The system of collective bargaining in the banking sector has been operating since the early 1980s through the combination of sectoral level agreements where OTOE federation has the role of the contracting party from the labour side, and company level collective agreements where company level unions have the primary role. This structure of collective bargaining is challenged by the employers that in the late period, since 2005 increasingly oppose the signing of the sectoral collective agreements by OTOE. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. In the past, there have been extensive practices of social dialogue in the banking sector where the practice has been guiding its expansion in the general system of industrial relations. But during the last 3-4 years, social dialogue practices are challenged both by the government and by the employers in the banking sector. In the last two-three years, there has been legislation attempting to reform pension rights and pension founds across the board and primarily in the banking sector. In the labour legislation area there have been attempts to change industrial relations and collective bargaining rights in the public utilities sector in a broader context of privatisation policies. These impacted also upon banking sector industrial relations. 25
  • 26. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 5. The most important Challenges. For the banking sector Federation OTOE, the most important challenge of the period relates to the role of the national sectoral collective agreement. There has been since the early 1980s a national sectoral collective agreement which has been regulating sectoral employment relations, but in 2008 the banking sector employers rejected the necessity of the national sectoral collective agreement and challenged the collective bargaining right of OTOE, and indeed challenged its right to recourse to Mediation and Arbitration services as provided by the labour law. The employers suggest that bargaining should operate only at the company level if this is necessary. Although they have a national association (EET), they claim their association is not an employers’ association that may participate in collective bargaining and in collective agreements at the sectoral level. On this ground, banking employers in Greece oppose collective bargaining at the sectoral level. This appears to be the most important challenge for the banking sector industrial relations in Greece. 6. The preferred role for Social dialogue. The Greek labour law enforces the basic trade union rights since 1982. Back then, OTOE estimates that with the government intervention in the banking sector, the outcome has been an improved situation in employment relations. However, in the 1990’s, due to the aggressive legislation, OTOE considers that they suffered successive attacks. In this context, the social dialogue practices have not been established and OTOE members believe that although banks do not enjoy wide public support, they have not been really interested in having effective social dialogue procedures, as they have enjoyed great financial power and aimed to pursue their objectives through this. This produced a lot of more conflicts from banking sector employees with banks and governments and a lot of strikes in Greece. OTOE consider a success that they managed not to have split ups in the trade unions, although they felt that they suffered a collective attack from the government and the employers. OTOE considers that social dialogue would have been an effective alternative to the conflict oriented policies adopted by governments and employers. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. Social dialogue may contribute in enriching collective bargaining. The scope of collective bargaining itself with clear definition of the companies and types of workers falling under the national agreement, although it has been clearly defined, may be in need to bring uncovered areas under collective bargaining coverage. Wage and salary issues have been the main issue in collective agreements, and new issues on employability, beyond the scope of job security, in the sense of training rights, could be part of the social dialogue. Emerging issues related to new forms of employment and working hours, although working hours have been regulated by collective agreements and gender policies are areas where the social dialogue can provide positive effects. 26
  • 27. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. OTOE considers the employers reluctance to bargain at the sectoral level as the main barrier to social dialogue in the Greek banking sector. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. During the last twenty years, the banking sector has gone through a period of rapid and accelerating change under the influence of interdependent changes in the economic environment, in new technologies, in the market forces and in government policies concerning the institutional framework under which it operates. The move of the banking system towards liberalization and the privatisation of state credit institutions in countries like Ireland, Portugal, Norway and Greece, where deregulation has influenced the level of employment in a rather temporary positive manner, sets the scene of new challenges about the employment level and the mode of regulation of the employment relations in the Greek banking sector. 27
  • 28. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Portugal The key topic for Portugal is the challenge of expanding the role of the sectoral collective bargaining as a means for effective social dialogue. This appears to be to a certain extent a common theme between Portugal and Greece. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The Portuguese banking sector has been changing since the late 1990s. During the first years of 2000’s some main Portuguese banks have merged, namely the Millennium/BCP Group, which is a result of the join operation of Banco Português do Atlântico, Banco Pinto e Sotto Mayor and Banco Mello, all of them old and important national banks. Millennium/BCP became the biggest private Portuguese banking group. The last major change in the Portuguese banking sector happened in 2006 when Banco Espirito Santo merged with the Banco Internacional de Credito. This second bank belonged 100% to Espirito Santo Group, which means that this merger has been the product of in group restructuring. From then on, there is only speculation about possible further M&As. The employment levels are in 2008 lower than during the 1990’s. Employment cuts have lead to a large number of retired people which were mainly made according to collective agreements. The replacement of those workers has been done either by new workers with academic degrees or new technologies. Special attention should be given to employment in the emerging call centres where lots of young people have been hired out of any collective agreement because they are not considered banking workers. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. All changes that happened in the Portuguese banking sector have been regulated, as far as workers’ rights and benefits are concerned, by the collective agreement of the banking sector, where trade unions have initiated and leaded the negotiations. The Portuguese labour legislation is only applied in matters where collective agreements are absent. In these restructuring cases, Portuguese trade unions consider that they prepared good instruments in order to defend, in the best possible way, the workers they represented. Their bargaining influence applied in all mergers’ cases mentioned in the above analysis of banking sector restructuring. 28
  • 29. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. In the Portuguese banking sector employees are protected by collective bargaining rights and the several Unions (SBC, SBSI and SBN are regional sectoral unions) that negotiated the collective agreements had been consulted and given their points of view about the introduction of new technology as well as about restructuring. Especially since the law about restructuring obliged companies to negotiate with trade unions representatives when they decided to reduce their employment level. Therefore, collective agreement must be applied and in all cases of negotiations implemented properly. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. Sectoral trade union officers and worker’s councils have been very active along the restructuring process in Portuguese banking sector. Sindicato dos Bancarios do Centro (SBC) is a sectoral one, but they belong, as affiliate, to the national union confederation UGT, and when they need support in their aims, the confederation gives them all information and documents necessary to prepare campaigns of defence of their affiliates. Although there is no formal permanent monitoring for developments in the sector trade unions like SBC always keep their attention to companies, because they have inside presence through officers representing employees to SBC and SBC to employees, who may require regular meetings and information on behalf of SBC in order to notice any eventual movements on the normal life of the employment relations of each banking company. 5. The most important Challenges. Sindicato dos Bancarios do Centro (SBC) from the many possible challenges understand as the hardest that of the union affiliation by younger people due to labour legislation flexibility and security in their jobs. SBC underline their observation that new young banking workers recently admitted to the sector feel no need to join the trade unions. They defend their points of view by answering that they think trade unions are not necessary because their representatives are extremely politicised. In this attitude being a unionist is like being a strange person defending everything but the interests of the workers. And this is considered by SBC the main challenge to their trade union, together with their colleagues from the other regional sectoral unions SBSI and SBN and this need to be changed. 6. The preferred role for Social Dialogue. Even when SBC defends that information and consultation are relevant forms the imple- mentation of which should be defended by in the companies through the support to EWC’s including Unions representatives inside these structures, they give priority to their way 29
  • 30. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ of defending that Collective Bargaining is the centre of their concerns in what means “Social Dialogue” between parts – employers and employees. That’s why SBC is joining forces to become member of a new Portuguese federation which includes the three regional banking unions (SBC, SBSI and SBN) and two insurances. This is considered the way to reach a stronger representation and create a greater pressure close to the companie’s staff managers and a form to obtain better guarantees negotiated and inscribed into collective agreements. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. SBC considers that work organization, training and worker’s retirement and pre-retirement are policy areas where social dialogue should play a role. Of course considers that social dialogue outside collective bargaining also includes other areas, such as social benefits that are part of the social policy system, and also in areas such as the relevant and desired balance between work and private life under some company support either financial or any other issue such as working time. 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. SBC considers that the only barriers are those created by the banking companies when they do not accept unions’ role and suggestions to improve employment relations through a better social dialogue. But SBC understand this barrier as a obstacle to effective collective bargaining which requires that when two partners, in order to be able to bargain effectively, need to understand each other’s needs and priorities about any subject that becomes a bargaining issue. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. In Portugal, the banking sector restructuring occurred mainly in the period between 2001-2002 when Millennium/BCP Group has enlarged by acquiring two other well known Portuguese banks, namely Atlantico and Sotto Mayor, becoming thus the first Portuguese private banking group. The policy arguments widely debated by economic advisors and journalists in the press it was that it aimed, as the only way to, defend the Portuguese banking sector by growing inside the national market. And that in this way it would operate as a barrier to the appetites of possible foreign acquisitions. SBC can say in 2008 that it was true. After that wave of restructuring banks from other countries only have the chance to get into the Portuguese market through the overture of their own branches or representa- tions. The exceptions are Spanish banks that have now interests in some Portuguese banks. About social dialogue in the Portuguese banking sector as seen by social partners, SBC considers that banking sector is a kind of “oasis” in the collective bargaining system, because it is understood in their country that banking is the most advanced sector in the Portuguese economic life and banks can be the greatest investors in new technologies. 30
  • 31. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges Malta The key topic for Malta is the challenge of dealing with “new comers” in the sector (through M&A’s), and in this context maintaining union membership and their role in social dialogue. This appears to be a common theme between Malta and Cyprus. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The Maltese financial sector has continued to grow with the two main banks, HSBC Bank Malta and Bank of Valletta continuing to lead the market and post record results and a number of smaller players also doing well. The financial sector in Malta now employs over 6.000 people and directly and indirectly contributes 12% to GDP. There have been new business initiatives into such areas as Trust Services, Invoice Finance, Captive Insurance, Custody Services and Hedge Funds. While these have led to new employment opportunities and continue to flourish, they have not had any major impact on employment levels. Recent major market developments included Lombard Bank Malta buying 35% of Maltapost in October 2006 taking its shareholding to 60%. Synergies from this investment as of yet have not been seen in the marketplace. In October 2007, Marfin Popular Bank (Cyprus) purchased 43% in Lombard Bank Malta. Once again this has not had any major impact. An interesting development was the establishment Dutch/Turkish bank Credit Europe and Portuguese Banif Bank in the latter half of 2007. Banif Bank has plans to become the third largest player in Malta and establish an extensive branch network. The entry of these banks has increased competition for quality staff, with some employees from the bigger banks moving over to the new entrants. However, as of yet these new banks have not made significant inroads in the market. Nevertheless, HSBC Bank Malta plc has also started off-shoring support areas of work to India with the respective employees being redeployed to growth and income generating business areas within the Malta group. This process is being conducted with the involve- ment of the Malta Union of Bank Employees – MUBE to ensure all employees are efficiently redeployed and where possible also given the right opportunities to even improve their own career progression. MUBE and HSBC have both agreed to commit to ensure that the process of off-shoring is run smoothly. A major development for employment in the sector was the setting up of an International Call Centre by HSBC. The first phase of this project opened in November 2006 and after experiencing positive results was extended in May 2007 to double capacity and now employs 550 people. This is a significant increase in employment in this sector in a very short period of time. 31
  • 32. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. The main type of social dialogue which took place in these major developments with trade unions was information and consultation procedures. As these developments were positive for the sector, because they created employment opportunities, there were no major conflicts. However, MUBE was vigilant and took an active role to ensure that existing work practices were not affected and that new employment does not have any adverse effects in existing standards. Legislation concerning family friendly policies has been introduced but not yet fully effective since Collective Bargaining still plays an important role in what can really be introduced successfully in a way of compromise between Employers and Unions. 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. In Malta, the main tool for regulating banking sector employment relations remains collective bargaining. MUBE negotiates collective agreement for the categories of staff within the commercial banks and central bank and this is the main mechanism used to effectively engage in social dialogue with employers and resolve issues. It is only HSBC Bank Malta, as a multi-national bank, that has a Works Council as established by EU law to inform employees. In spite of the bank having two elected members, one clerical and one managerial, participating in the European Works Council, employees cannot really say they are better informed. Apart from a section on the bank’s intranet which employees can access with some information, nothing much else comes out of this. MUBE considers that in reality, stuff has to learn much more about the Works Council. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. As Malta is a small island, MUBE officials together with bank representatives are those who are most active in any major change in the banking sector. MUBE takes a proactive role in any proposed change, new initiative or other development happening anywhere in the financial services sector. There is no legal provision for permanent monitoring of developments in the banking sector, however, this is done by the trade union by taking a proactive interest in any developments and by having a network of representatives throughout the sector, who together with members keep the union informed of all that is happening. 32
  • 33. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges The trade unions have also negotiated and inserted clauses in the collective agreement which necessitates that employers engage in dialogue with the unions prior to introducing a major development or change. This has assisted social dialogue taking place and has contributed to a good employer-employee working relationship. On the positive impact of Works Councils, MUBE considers that in spite of its good intentions, nothing much has come out of it yet. 5. The most important Challenges. The Maltese financial services sector is a dynamic one and continues to flourish. Employment levels have increased with a number of specialised roles and smaller players entering the market. However, the main contribution to employment came from the HSBC International Call Centre mentioned concerning the main changes that happened in the national banking system. Major developments have also occurred in the area of technology with internet banking, mobile banking, and more sophisticated automated channels. Overall, these have contributed to the provision of a more efficient and professional financial service. As the financial services market in Malta is rather mature, the main issue is strong competition where the main banks are very aggressive and have high targets levels which more often result in pressure on employees. Maintaining employee performance levels is an ongoing challenge and the Union plays a major role in supporting workers and ensuring the banks do not exploit employees. Another issue which needs to be monitored is that of outsourcing certain functions of the business such as security services and cash transportation. Banks are finding it more cost-effective and efficient to outsource such non-core tasks. While this had led to redeployment of staff (no redundancies) it is an area which MUBE closely monitors. As already indicated, MUBE is also involved in supporting and assisting employees who are moved from non-core business areas to growth areas through an offshoring process with work going to India. The MUBE aim is that no employee will be made redundant. 6. The preferred role for Social Dialogue. According to MUBE the main aim should be to introduce needed change in a manner which is not disruptive or destructive. A smooth implementation of new procedures, work practices, or products and services which are beneficial for the individual organisation and the financial sector is in everyone’s interest. The main objective should therefore be to work together, understand what is happening and agree on how the restructuring should take place. This will result in change taking place faster with less animosity or delay and allow the benefits to manifest themselves much sooner. The Union’s role is to ensure that adequate time-frames are set to enable “displaced” staff to be redeployed in an efficient manner, well retrained and well supported. 33
  • 34. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. MUBE considers that social dialogue has been most effective in current and anticipated developments relating to employment and the work organisation. However, it has also been used with good results when there have been changes in business structure and as of recent in work and life balance initiatives. With regards to training and redundancies, social dialogue on these areas mainly takes place as part of the collective bargaining process. However, Work-Life balance has become top priority as competition is becoming more aggressive, with HSBC as the main multinational leading well ahead in the aggressive nature of its practice. One must not exclude that other local banks step up their competitive levels in order to be able to survive in the market even though the consolidation of niche markets is a more obvious option to be taken by the smaller players. Business structures are expected to change in some areas, such as Wealth Management, where external resource is employed on strictly commission basis with the specific aim of targeting new business. This kind of attachment is also known as “tied agent” recruitment. Training and education will again feature as updating practice and specialisation is becoming more important especially where accreditation is concerned. The latest introduction is that of the Academic Commercial Training programme for such areas as those of Commercial Branch or Credit offices where advice and empowerment enable one-stop banking at its most efficient level. As to Information Technology, the recent change is the call for recruitment of IT officials whose function will be to service other areas of the HSBC group outside Malta using local resource as support and service function to other countries. 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. MUBE considers that the main barrier to enhancing social dialogue is when one of the employers attempts to introduce a new work practice or initiative which affects established working conditions, without first consulting and discussing with the Union. Although in the recent past there have not been any major issues, there are instances when the Union had to intervene and take immediate remedial action. Such incidents can easily sour relations and hinder social dialogue. New issues would be those of excessive target setting, time-frames set too short and too much insistence on cost-effectiveness at the expense of investment and training of human resources, while Work-Life Balance remains for MUBE top of all issues. 34
  • 35. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. MUBE considers that the Maltese financial services sector is one of the most dynamic and successful of the whole economy. Banks are very profitable and working conditions and practices are some of the best on the island. There is no public debate about banking sector restructuring, although this was topical a decade or so ago when banks were being privatised. Banks have significantly restructured since then and with EU membership in 2004 consolidated their positions. Today, social dialogue practice in the banking sector is seen as functioning properly and contributing to the advancement of the sector. 35
  • 36. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Cyprus The key topic for Cyprus is the challenge of dealing with “new comers” in the sector (through M&As), and in this context maintaining union membership and their role in social dialogue. This appears to be a common theme between Cyprus and Malta. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The Cyprus financial sector has continued to be subject to continuous changes. Indicative of these are the redundant employees in Arabic bank, the merger of Laiki, Marfin and Egna- tias Bank, the attempts to take over Bank of Cyprus by Bank of Piraeus and then by Marfin, the changes in ownership at Universal Bank, the new entry in the Cyprus financial sector of banks such as Societe Generale, Eurobank , Πειραιώς / Universal life, Εμπορική / Credit Agricole, and the expansion of Cypriot banks outside the Cypriot economy mainly in the south eastern Europe. These are the main aspects of changes and restructuring in the Cyprus financial sector. However, employment levels have risen and this enhances employment mobility between banks. There is the view that employment will continue rising. This is related to the governmental project to make Cyprus a regional financial centre. The ETYK union has had a major role in maintaining jobs with proactive policy. The introduction of new technology and its impact to work organisation may be of increasing importance. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. The main way of regulation of the changes has been through various aspects of social dialogue, mainly collective bargaining in the context of a national system based on voluntarism and codes of practice. Remuneration, pay and employment issues have been dealt via collective bargaining. For other issues not directly affecting pay and job security the information and consultation procedures were used. As a matter of principle, in front of any change and restructuring ETYK gives priority to three issues. First, no impact on pay and remuneration, second, preservation of jobs, and third, homogeneity and equal treatment at the workplace. 36
  • 37. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. The main tool for employment relation regulation is collective bargaining. ETYK negotiates collective agreement for the categories of staff within the banks which is the main mechanism used to effectively engage in social dialogue with employers and resolve issues. However, in the context of applying the “acquis communautaire”, ETYK initiated the formation of EWCs in Bank of Cyprus, in Marfin, in Elliniki Bank. There is also participation in the EWCs of Barclays and Societe Generale. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. Financial sector employees in Cyprus are all represented by ETYK. ETYK bargains at the sectoral and company level. Even the representatives at EWCs are nominated by ETYK. 5. The most important Challenges. ETYK consider that the Cypriot financial services sector is dynamic and further M&As are expected to provide the major challenges in the near future. The adoption of new technologies also may impact on employment relations and employment levels by reshaping work organisation. 6. The preferred role for Social Dialogue. According to the ETYK views, the main aim should be to promote the three (mentioned above) basic principles of ETYK in cases of changes and restructuring in the financial sector. First, no impact on pay and remuneration, second, preservation of jobs, and third, homoge- neity and equal treatment at the workplace. Further to deal with unexpected and sudden changes, and indeed, to promote continuous skill upgrading and vocational training of the employees. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. ETYK considers that jobs protection, and in the case of adjustment to employment levels the bargaining and participation in shaping voluntary redundancy schemes, remain areas where social dialogue has a role to play. Also Social Dialogue may influence organisational restructuring that affects jobs and employment levels and has had and may further work with regard to further training of banking sector employees. 37
  • 38. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. ETYK considers that the main barrier to enhancing social dialogue is when “new coming” employers do not accept established collective bargaining procedures and try to by-pass them. Up to the present this has been dealt with effectively, but with any new M&As forthcoming this challenge might become more important. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. The Cyprus financial service’s sector is dynamic and until now social dialogue has been successful in safeguarding employment levels and employment rights of employees. ETYK considers the need for restructuring as a necessity but promotes the three main principles mentioned above. ETYK notes initiatives by foreign banks to change the established practices and act unilaterally. This may be aggravated with the presence of more foreign banks and their attempts to challenge the established system of collective bargaining and social dialogue. But today, social dialogue practice in the banking sector is seen by both sides (ETYK and employers KEST) as functioning properly and contributing to the advancement of the sector. 38
  • 39. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges Bulgaria The key topic for Bulgaria is the challenge of building social dialogue capacity through increasing membership and sectoral collective agreements. This appears to be a common theme between Bulgaria and Romania. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. In the period 2002-2008 there where different events regarding the changes in the banking sector. In 2003 one of the biggest Bulgarian bank was privatized – DSK (now – Banka DSK EAD) which was bought by the biggest Hungarian bank – OTP bank. In 2007, we had some mergers in the banking sector – Bulbank, HVB Bank Biochim and Hebrosbank were merged in one bank – Unicredit Bulbank AD. This event happened because of the merger between the ‘mother’ companies Unicredit (Italy) and HVB (Germany). In 2007 Bulgarian Post Bank and DZI Bank were merged in Eurobank EFG Bulgaria AD – the former 2 banks had one owner – the Greek Eurobank EFG. This period 2002-2008 is important also with regard to the process of the modernisation of the Bulgarian banks – all banks changed their software for executing their activity in real time. The employment trends in the period 2002-2008 have been positive as most of the Bulgarian banks increased their staff each year. It can be observed that in many cases there is a shortage of well experienced bank personnel. 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. The process of merging between Bulbank, HVB Bank Biochim and Hebrosbank was regulated by social dialogue through information and consultation procedures and through collective bargaining agreements. The similar process in EFG Eurobank Bulgaria was not regulated by a social dialogue because there were no trade unions in the former Bulgarian Post Bank and DZI Bank. 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. As mentioned, there is a social dialogue procedure only in these cases where there exist trade unions and employee representation in the respective banks. The Bulgarian labour legislation provides all rights to the employees to be informed by their employer. But in practice, these rights can be realized only in cases where there exist and operate trade unions which defend the interests of their member employees. 39
  • 40. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. At the current stage, there has been no influence by unions at the sectoral level because of the lack of sectoral level union. It has been initiated and formed by company level unions. Therefore, the main representative bodies which were active in the processes of major changes in the banking sector were the company trade unions. It is noteworthy that despite the strong foreign presence in the Bulgarian banking sector there is only one banking group with EWC which has been established in Unicredit in 2007. 5. The most important Challenges. In this new context, Bulgarian trade unionists consider that there is more than one challenge to be faced. First it comes the demand for a growing number of banks employees in the expanding banking sector and the shortage of adequate numbers of well educated and with minimum experience bank employees. This sets the scene for the process of unionisation. Trade unions exist and operate only in the biggest banks. The periodic introduction of new IT is also an issue raising training concerns. In this context, Bulgarian trade unionists consider very important that an employer’s banking organization is established in Bulgaria. Before that it is impossible to organize a social dialogue at the sectoral level. 6. The preferred role for Social Dialogue. Bulgarian trade unionists in the banking sector consider that all types of social dialogue procedures are important to them. From bargaining in a more successful way to become and stay well informed about the employment situation in each individual company. The collective bargaining and the collective agreements are considered very important for the social benefits offered to the employees. On the other hand, the retraining of the employees is considered very important in the process of globalisation and augmentation of the competition in the world market. 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. According to the Bulgarian trade unionists, their experience suggests that social dialogue is more effective for the process of training and for the social benefits offered to the bank employees. 40
  • 41. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. According to the Bulgarian trade unionists, the biggest barrier is the low level of unionisation in the banking sector. There are trade unions only in the biggest Bulgarian banks, namely in Unicredit Bulbank, United Bulgarian Bank and DSK Bank. Another barrier is the lack of employers’ organisation in the banking sector. They initiated the Federation of Trade unions in the financial sector, but cannot negotiate with banking employer’s organization because of its absence. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. In a nutshell, according to the Bulgarian trade unionists, unionisation and establishment of collective bargaining procedures appear to be the major present and future challenges. 41
  • 42. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Romania The key topic for Romania is the challenge of building social dialogue capacity through increasing membership and sectoral collective agreements. This appears to be a common theme between Romania and Bulgaria. 1. Major changes in the Banking Sector Employment Relations. The Romanian banking sector has been subject to major changes. All banking companies where unions exist, members of the Trade Union Federation from Insurance and Banking, have been privatised and been through permanent changes. Namely these Romanian companies are: • BRD Group Societe Generale; • Raiffeisen Bank; • Bancpost – EFG EUROBANK; • Unicredito Produzzione Acentrate; • Romexterra – MKB Group; • ASIBAN – AMMA GROUP; • BCR INSURANCES – Vienna Insurances Group; • ASIROM – Vienna Insurances Group 2. Ways of Regulation of the Banking Sector Changes. In the context of the national labour law in these banks there are Collective Labour Agreements, which the union’s and employer’s associations negotiate on an annual basis. These companies have also established information and consultation procedures between social dialogue partners. The relevant legislation that enhances trade unions for and to during their negotiations with employers are: • Law no. 53/2003- LABOUR LAW; • Law no. 54/2003- Union Law; • Law no. 130/1996- regarding Collective Bargaining; • Law no. 168/1999- regarding Labour Conflicts. 42
  • 43. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges 3. The Importance of Collective Bargaining. The Romanian legislation provides that companies negotiate Collective Labour Agreements with the representative unions or, in the absence thereof, with employee’s representatives. The trade unions consider that the only efficient tool is the Collective Labour Agreement by means of which they have tried to regulate all the above mentioned aspects of employment relations in the banks concerned. However, they notice the need to differentiate between the legal provisions and what really happens in practice. 4. The Role and Influence of Sectoral Trade Unions. The Romanian trade unions FSAB (TUFIB) are developing their activities and consider it is them that have the main role and the greatest contribution, compared to other bodies. They aim to monitor developments and intervene at the company level, by the company unions and with the support of the federation FSAB and “CNS Cartel ALFA” confederation. 5. The most important Challenges. FSAB (TUFIB) consider that there are many challenges but the most important for banking sector employees appears to be the work organisation, which means the implementation of what they call ‘work quotas’ and the ‘wage system’. For them, the main challenge is to increase membership and influence over a broadening policy agenda. 6. The preferred role for Social Dialogue. FSAB (TUFIB) consider that the most important aim relates to vocational training and permanent vocational training. In Romania there is a law that allows the employer’s association and unions in a certain branch of activity to establish sectoral works councils, which would especially deal with vocational training and permanent vocational training of employees. Unfortunately, it is not possible to establish such a sectoral works council in the branch of Insurances and Banking, because there is not an employers’ association yet established in Romania. 43
  • 44. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 7. The areas where Social Dialogue may play a role. FSAB (TUFIB) consider that there are two provisions in the collective labour agreements that should be implemented properly: a) regarding service outsourcing, where the unions and employer’s association agree that the service supplier is bound to take over the outsourced employees and keep them for one year with all the rights from the company they left. b) On leaving the company, fired employees are given a certain number of salaries as compensation. As in the last years there have not been any major changes and all provisions of collective labour agreements between unions’ and employers’ associations were enforced, the above mentioned provisions indicate that trade unions through collective bargaining can deal with existing, new and emerging issues. 8. Barriers to Social Dialogue. FSAB (TUFIB) they consider, although there is much room for improvement, there are no major difficulties to approach new issues in the relationship between unions and employer’s, but an employer’s association at the sectoral level would facilitate social dialogue procedures. 9. Future trends in Restructuring and New Challenges. FSAB (TUFIB) consider that in 2000-2005 there has been massive restructuring in the Romanian Banking and Insurance sector. Now they are past this period and there is no massive restructuring anymore and no major approach issues in the relationship between unions and employers’ association. Restructuring has not been since then a major topic of public debate. Only the implications of the global financial crisis can make it again a hot issue for both employees and bankers. 44
  • 45. Best Practices for Social Dialogue in the Banking Sector and New Challenges Conclusion The experience of social dialogue for regulating the transformation of banking sector restructuring in nine old and new EU member states indicates that, although sectoral industrial relations remain mainly national, social dialogue is not only theory, or part of a normative approach, but has provided noticeable “best practices” of social dialogue in the banking sectors at the national level. The “best practices” summarised in this report can help to “learn from each other” in meeting the new challenges. In half of the countries examined in this report social dialogue has been used as a driving force for economic and social reform in the banking sector, with practical solutions that helped in preserving the European Social Model. These experiences of social dialogue become more valuable under the new conditions of the ongoing financial crisis that affects also employment relations in the banking sectors. 45
  • 46. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 46
  • 47. 1. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise Dr Christos Α. Ιoannou Panagiotis Panagiotopoulos Dr Lampros Stergioulas Report for INE - OTOE prepared for the project DialogoS+ 47
  • 48. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Executive Summary The DialogoS+ Project aims to promote the role of social dialogue in the banking sector, strengthen the link between old and new members and make European social dialogue a force for innovation and change. DialogoS+ builds on the successful implementation of the previous project Dialogo.S by using new tools such as roadmapping and simulation of social dialogue. It elaborates on the communication mechanisms of the European banking sector trade unions’ community in order to facilitate exchanging important experiences, creating and diffusing knowledge, as well as identifying and transferring best practices. Given the context of the international crisis in the banking sector, the outcome of DialogoS+ aims to provide important added value on investigating how the crisis may affect employment relations and social dialogue dynamics (diagnosis) and analyze what is and should be the role of employees within this environment. In order to achieve these objectives, DialogoS+ applies the concept of roadmapping as a knowledge creation and strategic decision-making process. A roadmap is a collaborative strategic decision-making tool mainly applied in technology, science and industry with the purpose of deliberating and disseminating strategic decisions. Its main concept is based on analyzing the gaps between desired and expected future situations for the purpose of proposing actions to bridge them. The DialogoS+ community implements this innovative exercise in order to stimulate and promote dialogue, as well as reach consensus on priori- ties and objectives over its key issues. Through the roadmapping process, the opinions and predictions of both employees and trade union experts over these key issues were recorded and analysed. The present docu- ment introduces the concept of roadmapping and explains how this was perceived and applied under the scope of DialogoS+. Based on the state-of-the-art analysis of roadmapping and the specific methodology applied, the thematic areas and main conclusions of the roadmapping exercise are presented and discussed. 48
  • 49. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise 1. Introduction 1.1 Overall Aims of DialogoS+ Constructing a social European Union where the mechanisms of social dialogue will provide the means to efficiently regulate employment relations in the context of financial stabil- ity while in parallel creating an environment of working security and fruitful collaboration between the trade unions, the employers and all social stakeholders has always been the vision of European citizens. As proved by the 2008-2009 crisis in the banking sector, it is probably the first time in history that modern economies seem to be so interrelated with each other, in a way that individual governments may no longer have full control over eco- nomical challenges. International cooperation seems to be an a priori condition for handling the complexity of potential crisis. Under this uncertain environment, evaluating and strengthening international experience on social dialogue in order to exploit knowledge and expectations over critical issues of banking sector employment relations becomes a significant prerequisite in terms of decid- ing upon future actions and trade unions’ strategic objectives. The aims of DialogoS+ is to promote social dialogue in the banking sector, in terms of identifying trends and changes to come, develop a roadmap as a collaborative strategic decision-making tool and disseminate this knowledge through a series of activities. The main objectives of the project are sum- marized as following: 1. Identify trend and changes to come in the sector from the employers and the employee’s point of view. 2. Roadmap industrial relations practices from the banking sector of nine countries. 3. Promote knowledge from the above through training material. 4. Train participants (opinion leaders) through workshops. 5. Develop enduring communication and social dialogue tools which will facilitate the participation of underrepresented groups. The above objectives were applied in seven tasks which were carried out under the scope of the project. Figure 1 maps these tasks and explains their interrelation. The basic stages of the project were: creating and exchanging knowledge, disseminating and evaluating. The project tasks consisted of the following (for more details see the project website): • Initiation workshop. • Design, implementation and analysis of the forecasting exercise (roadmapping). • Training package development. • Workshops on future developments of the European financial system and its implications on bank employees. 49
  • 50. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ • Role playing. • Simulation of Social Dialogue through videoconference. • Evaluation and Policy brief - Closing conference in Cyprus. Task 3 Τask 1 Task 2 Task 4 Task 7 Task 5 Initiation and Roadmapping Stage Evaluation and Closing Stage Objectives 1 and 2 Objective 5 Task 6 Dissemination Stage Objectives 3,4 and 5 Figure 1: DialogoS+: Project Overview In particular, DialogoS+ elaborates on the outcome of previous European initiatives on the evaluation of social dialogue in the European Banking Sector, the exchange of processes and the transfer of best practices among transnational partners, such as the previous Dialogo.S and the Communicate project which also focused on the state-of-the-art comparative analysis of trends and practices with the purpose of promoting communication and social dialogue tools. Various data collection techniques were used, focusing on questionnaires and literature analysis. The aim was to develop an in-depth understanding on what constitutes a successful practice in the banking sector social dialogue and how leaders in the European field benefit from this knowledge. The 2008-2009 crisis in the banking sector was a fundamental element of DialogoS+ affecting its whole process and results. Throughout the execution of the project, the extent of the crisis was becoming more and more apparent in society and especially within the banking sector. This environment of uncertainty triggered a debate over the role of bank employees and their trade unions regarding the origins of the crisis and its results over sensitive issues such as job security. These findings were also recorded in DialogoS+, having an important impact on its outcome. 50
  • 51. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise 1.2 Scope and Motivation of this Report The purpose of this report is to analyze the design and implementation of the roadmapping process (Task 2), while also presenting its results in terms of which seem to be the most important issues in the sector, what is the current situation, what are the future expecta- tions, what are the desired conditions and how the gap between them could be bridged through certain priorities and recommendations. The outcome of this process will hopefully assist in acquiring a better understanding of the banking sector, discovering and disseminat- ing new ideas on how working conditions could be improved and stabilized and in identify- ing leading initiatives from the union’s side in terms of dealing with the crisis and preventing future ones. Furthermore, it demonstrates a clear case of traditional organizations such as trade unions attempting to adjust to the high social expectations of our times and their implications upon their structures, decision-making processes and ability to modernize according to new challenges and needs. At the first stage, this report briefly comments on the 2008-2009 crisis with respect to social dialogue under the context of the project (section 1.3). At the next step, focus will be given on describing the diverse and flexible nature of roadmapping and its importance and benefits (section 2.1). After this introduction, section 2.2 describes DialogoS+ roadmap- ping approach and methodology, presenting and explaining decisions over data collection with respect to the stages of the roadmapping process. In section 3, the available data are analyzed according to each roadmapping area. In the conclusion, future steps and actions are discussed. In the figure below, an overview of the stakeholders and processes involved during the design and execution of the roadmapping exercise is depicted. The input data were mainly produced by the participant trade unions. Brunel University was responsible for provid- ing the roadmapping methodology and gathering and analyzing the results with the help of OTOE (Greece) and the other partners. External literature was also exploited in relevance to the state-of-the-art in social dialogue and the roadmapping concept and applications. Participant Participant Brunel Country Country University Roadmapping External Data Methodology Literature Task 2: Analysis, Design and Implementation of the Forecasting Exercise DialogoS+ Roadmap Figure 2: DialogoS+: Overview of Task 2 51
  • 52. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 1.3 The Nature of Banking Sector Industrial Relations: before and after the Crisis The Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) has challenged and enhanced further restructur- ing of the banking systems in European countries in order to make them meet the require- ments of a competitive market economy. Market-oriented reforms and bank restructuring is closely linked to a globalised market economy greatly dependant on the financial system stability. At the same time, the reform of the banking system required: macroeconomic stability across the EU, corporate sector integration and reforming the regulatory framework on the base of tripartite agreements. Whilst banks in Europe don’t have the biggest share in total employment, their contribu- tion to total added value is much larger and they control a major share of assets in the economy. Financial services are increasingly globalised. Indeed, the substantial expansion of international activities is due to deregulation and the communication technology revolution. Probably the most significant source of change in the EU has been the creation of the Single Market in financial services that culminated in January 1999 and the introduction of Euro. European Social Dialogue has led to both inter-sectoral and sectoral European collective agreements. Its outcomes are modest compared to national systems of collective bargaining and social dialogue. Banking sector social partners have had a unique position within civil society because they have been best-placed to address issues related to the new challenges and equal opportunities in terms of working across Europe, in a similar context, and the impact of economic integration in industrial relations. They have also faced the impact of advances in technology and financial liberalization which both imply fundamental changes in traditional business processes and working conditions. The financial and banking services market has come across the challenge of adapting to the new economy together with the sector’s managers, employees, and organizations. The challenge of EU’s enlargement renewed the need to focus on the value of social dialogue as part of European social patrimony. Forces such as globalization, technological change, deregulation and European integration have fundamentally transformed the European banking industry. Just before the eruption of the financial crisis, the sector in EU concerned almost three millions workers of all types in more than seven thousand firms, staffing the banking industry in Europe. It continued to develop in recent years and its employment figures in the end of 2006 were around 2.5 per cent of total EU employment. This rate was foreseen to increase in the coming years and probably increased until the eruption of the global financial crisis in 2008. Banking sector employees belong to categories such as finance and sales, professionals, as well as IT specialists and technicians. The category of “medium skilled workers” is also important, as are managerial positions. The governance of this gradually integrated system has major importance in the development of industrial relations across EU. The impact of Social Dialogue and the role of trade unions are not always clear and the procedures of social dialogue and collective bargaining need to be built or strengthened. 52
  • 53. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise According to the European Central Bank (October 2008), the total number of credit institutions has been declining steadily during the period 2003-2007, falling from 9054 in 2003 to 8348 in 2007 in EU of 27. Social dialogue procedures have focused on important issues for the sector, such as the mergers and acquisitions, privatisation, call-centres, EU-enlargement, etc. Certain of them have resulted in joint coordinated action and initiatives aiming to regulate the new cycle of restructuring that has been caused and enhanced by the technology gallop. This provoked: loss of jobs especially for elder employees, increased existing personnel insecurity and pressure on salaries. Under this context, ”europeanisation” affected not only the company and the actors involved, but also the evolution of corporate governance. Social Dialogue procedures could be seen as a further example of developing the “multi-level governance” model across EU. 53
  • 54. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 2. Roadmapping: Definitions and DialogoS+ Methodology 2.1 Introduction to Roadmapping The concept of roadmapping generally refers to activities related to strategic planning and decision making. It draws a conceptual analogy from common sense decisions of choosing among different paths in order to approach a physical destination. Roadmapping constitutes a framework of principles, practices and methodologies characterized by increased diversity and flexibility. It could be argued that a roadmap is in fact a project management activity describing a sequence of processes and their interrelations. This is partially true, in the sense that a roadmap does import concepts from project management in terms of analyzing what kind of activities need to be implemented and in what order. However, a roadmap is a much wider concept, involving the aspects of forecasting and knowledge creation through its application process. Furthermore, a roadmap refers to more extensive timeframes (usually 5-10 years) and has very diverse fields of applications spanning from technology and industry to social and policy roadmaps. The purpose of this chapter is to briefly introduce the concepts and various aspects of roadmapping, as well as discuss its importance, benefits and final outcomes. Generating this better understanding of what constitutes a roadmap and which are its scopes, limitations and processes, is essential before describing DialogoS+ roadmapping methodology and presenting its results. The main purpose is to explain the concept of “roadmapping” or “roadmapping thinking” as an entire communication and collaboration process resulting in the production of a roadmap. The Basic Roadmapping Concept The basic idea of roadmapping lies in analyzing the gaps between expected and desired future situations with the purpose of proposing actions and recommendations aiming to bridge them. A roadmap answers the vital questions of: where are we now? Where we want to go in the future? How we are going to get there? (1, 2). Roadmapping definitions are diverse as well. For example, Kostoff and Schaller (3) define roadmaps as “decision aids to improve coordination of activities and resources in increasingly complex and uncertain environments”. Phaal and Muller (2) characterize roadmaps as “common language and structure for both the development and the deployment of strategy”. Within the scope of DialogoS+, we approached roadmapping in a broad context as instrument of modeling and disseminating visions, facilitating communication, knowledge sharing and collaborative strategic decision-making within an organization, across organizations or at national or transnational level. 54
  • 55. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise The initial step of roadmapping practicing is to analyse the current state-of-the-art in order to define the axis upon which the roadmapping process will continue. The next step is to navigate into future scenarios and attempt to forecast through expectations and facts on future conditions. Desired situations need to be identified, focusing on what we want to achieve regardless of whether this is realistic or possible according to current conditions or not (visions). At the next stage, roadmapping comes to the critical point of identifying the gaps between the expected and the desired future. This process is known as gap analysis and is essential to the roadmapping concept, because it is the stage in which critical ele- ments, challenges and barriers are identified. Finally, actions and recommendations are for- mulated and modelled, aiming in bridging the gaps. At this final step, feasibility and recourse allocation issues need to be taken into account in relevance to decisions. This aspect also includes specific timeframes and future milestones or roadmap updates. The following figure summarizes the basic roadmapping concept. Expected Future Present State Desired Gaps Future Roadmapping Figure 3: Basic Roadmapping Concept Although the basic idea of roadmapping is by its nature linear, developing roadmap of high quality in many cases requires certain iterations of the above steps and feedback loops among them, as for example explained by Phaal and Muller (2). Particularly, when it comes to actions and recommendations, this process usually requires certain iterations in order to achieve optimal decisions and maximum consensus among the roadmapping parties. In fact, roadmapping in practice comes in various forms in terms of application fields, methodologies, presentation of the final outcome and others. At the next section, application examples and roadmapping approaches are briefly reviewed. 55
  • 56. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Roadmapping applications As mentioned above, roadmapping applications are very broad and vary from technology and science to government, industry or even roadmaps in the field of diplomacy. Even though the main idea of roadmapping remains the same, there is noticeable diversity in the way roadmaps are generated, modelled, presented and disseminated. In fact, road- mapping development has been mostly driven by practitioners, such as companies, govern- mental agencies and consulting firms, without experiencing an analogous support of relevant academic foundational research. In the roadmapping literature, the main fields of applica- tion seem to be technology and corporate strategy. One common example is in building confidence in new product development decisions (4,5). Another is in decisions related to Research and Development (6-9) or in corporate social responsibility (10). There are also many examples in the literature concerning technology roadmaps. Technol- ogy roadmaps are produced in order to shape and support policies regarding the evolution and diffusion of innovative technologies. Technology roadmap examples typically, but not exclusively include the following: • The energy services sector (11,12) • Environment, sustainable development and climate change (13,14) • Electronics (14,15) • Software engineering (16). Additionally, roadmapping has been applied in the fields of eServices (17), eCommerce (18) and particularly in eGovernment (19,20), in which many national roadmaps have been devel- oped as well. Roadmapping has also been introduced as a concept in the fields of social dia- logue, politics and diplomacy. A well known example in diplomacy is the Roadmap to Peace in the Region of Middle East (21), introduced by the Quartet Mediators (United Nations, European Union, United States and Russia). In the field of social dialogue, a few attempts to describe relevant strategies in the form of a roadmap have been recorded at European level. These attempts present a basis of important previous knowledge for DialogoS+ and include the following: • The Roadmap for equality between women and men (2006-2010), produced by the European Commission (22) in order to identify priorities, sets of objectives and key actions regarding the gender equality agenda in Europe. This roadmap was created with the purpose of transforming European policies in gender equality into legislation and measures, such as establishing systems for gathering reliable statistics, developing best practices reports and forming networks of gender equality bodies. • The Roadmap 2007-2009 for the European Social Dialogue in national and European administration, produced by the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) (23). This roadmap addresses key issues in the field such as development of skills, social mobility, gender equality, equal opportunities and others. It seeks to reflect priorities from both EPSU and EPAN (European Public Administration Network), aiming at promoting quality public administration in Europe. 56
  • 57. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise Roadmapping has also been previously applied in European research. In particular, in the fields of technology enhanced professional training and learning by the TIME2LEARN and PROLEARN projects. The TIME2LEARN Roadmap defined priority areas for future research in eLearning and eTraining in Europe, with a view to respond to the needs of the emerging European Professional entraining (24). The PROLEARN project continued this work by bringing together a Network of Excellence with the purpose of producing a road- map about the future of Technology Enhanced Professional Learning in Europe (25). The PROLEARN Roadmap applied a knowledge-oriented approach to roadmapping (1), which is discussed in the next section. Based on the diversity of the above examples, it can be concluded that roadmapping addresses organizational issues in different situations, incorporating flexibility in terms of purpose, format and use. Phaal (26) attempted to classify main technology roadmaps with regards to these categories and identified purposes such as Product, Service, Knowledge Asset or Integration Planning and different formats such as multiple layers, bars, tables, graphs or flow charts. Further dichotomies in terms of roadmapping approaches have been introduced by Kostoff and Schaller (3), who drew a line between usual expert-based road- maps, produced as a result of human collaboration and computer-based or hybrid roadmaps which can be partially or totally produced by automatic methodologies using large databases of various sources of information. As far as the different roadmap development methodologies are concerned, there is also a significant variety in the literature. This can be considered a normal consequence, given the extensive diversity of roadmapping practices and the fact that roadmapping has been evolved mostly by practitioners, beyond the rigor of academic practices. Phaal and Muller (2) presented an architectural framework for roadmapping by exploring issues of how to design and architect roadmaps. They also focused on answering the vital question of what constitutes a successful roadmap and why. They identify layering, structure and granularity as key aspects of every roadmap, while also addressing issues such as how organizations align roadmapping with their traditional business processes. Another aspect of roadmap- ping they consider important is its use as a forum of bringing together stakeholders and the implications of the human interaction generated through this collaborative procedure. For the purpose of DialogoS+, the focus was on how communities such as banking sector trade unions can shift their traditional communication and experience sharing processes towards more knowledge-oriented strategic approaches in an attempt to adjust to modern demands and high expectations. Within this context, roadmapping was an attempt to modernize traditional processes and enhance to the collaboration, societal impact and public image of their community. In the next section, the collaboration and knowledge creation aspects of roadmapping are explored. 57
  • 58. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Benefits of Roadmapping According to Kostoff and Schaller (3), apart from the actual decisions, recommendations and actions which are the roadmapping deliverables, some equally important elements of roadmapping are the collaboration among different stakeholders and the knowledge creation and sharing. In particular, the authors mention that: “the practice of roadmap- ping typically involves social mechanisms, and is both a learning experience as well as a communication tool for roadmap participants”, noting the fact that a roadmap should be considered as a communication and collaboration tool, as well as a method of producing strategic decisions. Furthermore, they identify the benefits of roadmapping as: presenting a framework to plan and coordinate decisions, helping in developing consensus, transferring knowledge among experts and providing a tool for forecasting in targeted sectors. Kappel (27) introduced the concept of roadmapping as a process of creating and communicating a roadmapping. The development of the PROLEARN Roadmap was particularly focused on deriving and building knowledge as a community activity. A conceptual model based on Nonaka’s SECI spiral knowledge creation framework (28,29) was applied by using a special knowledge man- agement tool. This process brought together a vast number of stakeholders from industry and science to form a network with the purpose of implementing the roadmapping process centred on negotiation and mutual learning. As stated in (1): “In our context, roadmapping is both a learning activity and a knowledge creation process for the community that builds the roadmap. The knowledge creation process in roadmapping is a continuous process where individuals and groups transcend their boundaries by acquiring a new context, a new view of the subject domain, and new knowledge.” Furthermore, Phaal and Muller (2) characterize roadmaps as “visual languages”, noticing upon their visualization capabilities as an important benefit and further comment on the process of roadmapping as: “It is often claimed that the process of developing a roadmap is more valuable than the roadmap itself, because of the associated communication and consensus generated between functions and organizations”. One of the main conclusions derived by the authors is that workshops are a highly important element in the roadmap- ping process, as they provide “a forum for bringing together multiple stakeholders”. This aspect of roadmapping is what actually differentiates it from traditional project man- agement and forecasting techniques, in combination with their long term planning abilities. However, roadmaps also integrate certain classic advantages of project management, plan- ning and forecasting activities, usually in a higher level of abstraction, due to the fact that they mainly address strategic issues. In other words, roadmaps are the public interfaces of specific corporate strategies and project plans are most suitable for supporting the imple- mentation of strategies in details. Phaal and Muller (2009) comment on this relationship as: “Roadmapping is best suited to the “front-end” of the strategy or innovation process funnel, to support strategic decision making, while project planning is more suited to the middle and later stages of the funnel, to support implementation. The fact that roadmaps and project plans share a similar architecture enables the roadmaps to evolve into project plans, but the processes and aims of the two are different.” 58
  • 59. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise Based on the above literature, DialogoS+ attempted to apply the concept of “roadmapping thinking” in order to explore the benefits of a well-established way of strategic decision- making combined with an underlying scientific background in which this effort reflects. Roadmapping assisted in policy discussion and formulation in the structured way introduced by the basic roadmapping concept, which integrated new aspects of strategic thinking with- out seeking to apply complex procedures outside the scope of the community of European banking sector’s trade unions. In the next section, we describe how these ideas were customized and applied in the project. 2.2 Roadmapping in DialogoS+ DialogoS+ aims to promote the role of social dialogue in the European Banking Sector by building further on an existing community of practice among trade unions around Europe. Roadmapping in DialogoS+ is an innovative approach towards this objective, aiming at elaborating on and extroverting the social mechanisms of this community both as a final deliverable and as a communication and knowledge creation process itself. Although experi- ence on how to develop technology or industry roadmaps has been accumulating during the last decades, roadmapping into the field of social dialogue remains to a large extent unknown territory. If we also take into account the fact that this process occurred during the international financial crisis and its escalating consequences, roadmapping in DialogoS+ could addition- ally be characterized as a tool for diagnosis and analysis of what went wrong in the banking sector and how preventing actions need to be deployed in the future. This is particularly important, if we take into account the fact that the public seeks to assign responsibilities over the events of the crisis and more or less believes that bank employers either partially caused or were not at least able to prevent it. The DialogoS+ roadmap development methodology was dialogue-centered in practice, with the purpose of gathering and interpreting bank employees’ opinions and expectations over important issues of the sector. Furthermore, an important aspect of the process was to present the situation in each participant country’s banking sector trade union and under- stand the context under which best or worst practices seem to occur. Achieving higher levels of convergence between new and old member countries by transferring best prac- tices was also an important dimension and objective of the project. This was due to the significant gaps among them in issues such as union density rates, benefits, union structures, collective bargaining and others. The roadmapping process was linear including a few iterations in the last step in order to develop higher consensus with regards to the final recommendations and strategic roadmap visions. The whole concept of acting in order to achieve transition between desired and ex- pected future states implies the use of a SWOT analysis approach (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats). This is explained in the sense that desired states are affected 59
  • 60. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ by current strengths and weaknesses and actions to be implemented depend on percep- tions of opportunities and threats within the underlying horizon. Figure 4: DialogoS+ Roadmapping Process Figure 3 demonstrates the DialogoS+ roadmapping process and shows the connection between each stage, the data collected and analysed, as well as the interrelations between them. In each stage, the aim was to verify every fact or opinion at least from two different sources (data triangulation). The following sources of data with respect to their stage were examined: • Communicate Results: the results of the project Communicate formed a base of exchanging experience, data and best practices among the participant trade unions. This base was compiled after considering a specialized questionnaire, presentations from participants on issues such as sector information, organization of trade union movement of the sector and its objectives. Communicate results formed a suitable starting point for DialogoS+ in order to identify basic thematic areas for designing the questionnaire and analysing current state. • Dialogo.S Results: the results of the project Dialogo.S focused on evaluating international comparative experience on social dialogue and best practices with the purpose of establishing innovative tools and broader participation and debate on issues of social dialogue. These results also provided a framework for identifying key issues in the field, designing the questionnaire and analyzing current state. Dialogo.S occurred during a period of critical reforms in the European Banking sector, as new phenomena such as mergers and acquisitions became more and more frequent in a Europe on the verge of welcoming its new Eastern members. 60
  • 61. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise • Presentations from Partners: under the scope of DialogoS+, each partner presented the current status of social dialogue in each country’s banking sector. These presentations addressed key issues such as union structures and density rates, special socio-economic factors affecting social dialogue, progress and specific issues regarding working conditions, such as gender equality and liberalism. Presentations from partners were primary sources for analyzing current state. • Best Practices Report: the report entitled “Best Practices and Challenges for Social Dialogue in Banking Sector Developments” was compiled by Christos A. Ioannou (30) and had as main input the presentations from partners, as well as the previous knowledge from Dialogo.S and Communicate. It provides an analysis of current situation in each country, raises the issues of barriers to social dialogue and attempts certain customized future predictions for advancements. • Social Dialogue Literature Review: under the scope of DialogoS+, a review of recent literature regarding social dialogue was conducted. It aimed at examining knowledge regarding the structures of social dialogue in Europe, important advancements in industrial relations that need to be taken into consideration, as well as facts and data from reports. Sources analyzing the existence of the crisis, its impact and its underlying mechanisms were also examined. • Roadmapping Literature Review: a literature review on roadmapping was necessary in order to examine previous relevant knowledge before deciding on how to design the process. It was also important in order to position the attempt of DialogoS+ in the field’s literature, given the lack of extensive previous attempts to roadmap in social fields. The most important results of this review were presented in the previous chapter as an introduction and state-of-the-art analysis of the roadmapping concept. It included various roadmapping case studies, general methodologies and categories. • Web Questionnaire: the transnational online questionnaire was addressed to trade unions’ members and officials and was available through the project webpage. The purpose was to gather workers’ opinions about current and future situation regarding key issues of social dialogue, such as collective bargaining, impact of trade unions at negotiations, working conditions, union’s public image, industrial actions and others. The questionnaire was the main input for formulating the expected future and was also supplementary data for the current state analysis. Apart from the roadmapping purposes, the questionnaire was a first class opportunity for the unions to access an instance of workers’ opinions and stimulate better cooperation with them. • Cyprus Conference: the final conference in Cyprus was one of the main activities of the project (Task 7). After having the questionnaire’s results available and given the fact that the crisis was at that point at its largest extent, the main objectives of this workshop was to monitor the roadmapping process in terms of re-examining the key roadmapping areas, further analyzing the questionnaire results and updating the process on the events of the crisis. The main output of the workshop was to determine the vision strategy and perform the gap analysis between expected and desired future. Based on this, the road map was initially drafted and the lessons learnt from its application were discussed. 61
  • 62. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ • Project Meetings and Brainstorming Sessions: after entering the final roadmapping stage and given the gap analysis and available vision statements, the last activity was to finalize strategic actions and recommendations. This step included certain last project meetings, mainly in Athens and London and ad hoc communications between partners, including brainstorming sessions. The above process provided a customization of the roadmapping concept and relevant methodologies according to the requirements and recourses of DialogoS+. It’s application needed to be aligned with the human dynamics of the existing community of Europe’s banking sector trade unions, since it constituted an innovative approach on the ways in which the community exchanges and disseminates experiences and knowledge. Under this context, the fact that the roadmapping application was built upon the accumulated experience of previous relevant projects according to pre-established communication channels was very important and assisted in its introduction and increased potential of sustainability. As expected, roadmapping encountered certain practical limitations and unexpected factors, the most important of which was the financial crisis. Although the crisis was taken into account throughout all the stages and in particular during the last project activities, the uncertainty it introduced into the landscape of global economy posed difficulties into any attempts of strategic decision-making through forecasting techniques. Additionally, the extent of the crisis was becoming more and more obvious as the roadmapping stages were progressing, a fact which required the Current State analysis stage to be updated in the middle of the process. In terms of further barriers and procedural issues of roadmapping in DialogoS+ the following were identified: • Cultural and practical problems encountered during filling the questionnaire, such as language barriers (the questionnaire was available only in English) and diversity in participation among different countries which made statistical inferencing not simple and symmetric. • The lack of extensive relevant literature in the field of roadmapping for social dialogue in combination with the high level of technical and managerial logic incorporated in most common technology, science and industry roadmapping methodologies and case studies, which made them not an appropriate basis for social roadmap applications. • Under the scope of the project it was practically impossible to capture all multiple stakeholders’ views, interests and objectives with regards to social dialogue into the European banking sector. For example, the DialogoS+ consortium did not include all European banking sector trade unions, representatives of the employers and the policy makers both at national and European level. Their different perspectives and knowledge could have had essentially enriched the process and its final deliverable. At the next session the basic roadmapping results are presented and briefly analyzed. 62
  • 63. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise 3. Roadmap Thematic Areas 3.1 Working Life in the Banking Sector Current Trend At the present day and due to the events related to the crisis, employment and job security have become the most important issues in the banking sector working life. Additionally, issues such as individualism and liberalism are treated with equal importance as they are considered its triggering factors. For example, individualism tends to introduce lack of sense of the whole environment when employees tend to adopt “sell everything to everyone” approaches, as a result of incentive pays and additional bonuses. Furthermore, liberalism creates more open markets where the constant adoption and diffusion of new banking products shifts the system from the traditional model of “saving and using extra money to invest” to less controlled situations. Gender equality is also an important issue. Further measures need to be adopted towards achieving equality, because significant delays are still reported. One of the best practises in achieving high levels of equality is Spain, as a result of a very preoccupied government on social discrimination issues. However, even is Spain, issues such as bonuses and inceptive payments are still beyond trade unions’ control since they are negotiated individually. Vision Statement Elimination of management practices that lead to individualism. Achieve full gender equality. Establish strong social protection systems that will contribute towards job security. Regulate open markets in ways that they will not affect job security and create uncertain conditions. Expected State From the results of the questionnaire it is obvious that there is great concern that individualism, liberalism, inequality in incomes and flexibility in working life will increase in the future. Additionally, the great majority believes that job security will decrease, but they seem more optimistic in terms of general employment levels. The gap in wages between men and women is rather expected to remain the same or decrease. The uncertainty stimulated by the events of the crisis affects predictions into opinions that free market might be more regulated in the future, maybe even with the help of governmental intervention. 63
  • 64. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Gap Analysis The main gaps are identified in managing to eliminate practices related to individualism and cultivating a collaborative environment among employees. This gap is also related to issues of union density rates and active participation by their members. In addition, there is a gap between current initiatives that could bridge gaps in working conditions concerning gender equality. Job security needs to be established by creating and supporting protection systems especially when it comes to older workers. Recommendations and Actions • Negotiate and implement European Directives concerning genre equality. • Develop common indicators on implementation of EU cross-sectoral agreements. • Identify and review existing individualism practices. • Raise awareness on negatives results of liberalism using existing sector communication channels. • Make active steps in proposing measures that could contribute to job security under the context of the crisis. • Develop and finance mechanisms that will be able to support social protection. • Use new technologies to develop initiatives in order to further stimulate dialogue for improving working conditions. 3.2 Foreign Ownership, Mergers and Acquisitions Current Trend Foreign ownership, mergers and acquisitions have been frequent phenomena during the recent years in the European banking sector. The main issues this situation raises is protecting employees from changes in management and imposing common rules for banks which operate in different countries; an issue requiring collaboration and knowledge exchange. The impact of mergers and acquisitions in the European open market is not clearly clarified. In many cases it results in layoffs, but on the other hand it is also believed to increase overall employment in the sector as it leads to stronger intra-market competi- tion and sector development. However, the landscape is heavily affected by the crisis. On the one side, banks become more vulnerable as they lose profit and market capitaliza- tion, but for banks surviving the crisis it is not time to consider mergers and acquisitions in such a risky environment. 64
  • 65. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise If we also take into account the fact that governments consider applying nationalization policies in order to prevent banks from bankrupting, we can conclude that the current state in the area of foreign ownership, mergers and acquisitions is fragile and depends to a large extend on the outcome of the crisis. Vision Statement In the desired future, sufficient legislation and practiced ethics prevent job insecurity as a result of bank management changes. Additionally, bank owners negotiate with workers any change that might affect them and keep a clear agenda on management strategic priorities that might lead to any kind of instability. Furthermore, foreign investments, mergers and acquisitions create economies of scale which are beneficial for both the public and working opportunities in the sector as a result of competition. Conditions are always regulated and agreements applied and respected. The key issue in an ideal situation could be transparency and communication between employees and management. Employees feel secure from sudden changes in management as a consequence of concrete agreements and effective market practices. Expected State According to the questionnaire results, foreign ownership, mergers and acquisitions are expected to be more frequently practiced in the sector. This belief is interpreted in the radical landscape in banking sector changes, but it is not fully updated to the results of the crisis. Probably, it reflects a wider pessimistic belief that the mechanisms of the market and the economy of scale being built on the financial European Union will favor such investments. Actually, the expected state depends on the outcome of the crisis, in terms of who will manage to survive and what kind of conditions and investment opportunities will be available after the stabilization of the current environment. The extent of government intervention due to the crisis also poses an additional difficulty in forecasting future conditions. Gap Analysis The main gap is focused on collaborating with management in order to regulate changes and remove their negative effects reflecting on employees. There is also a geographical gap within Europe concerning job security and protection systems, especially between older and new member states. In general, better protection mechanisms need to be established. 65
  • 66. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Recommendations and Actions • Strengthen regulating legislation aiming to prevent flexible conditions in change of bank ownership and their negative impact on employees. • Eliminate diversification in standards of banking or protection system between Western Europe, Centre-Eastern Europe and Eastern Europe, by transferring knowledge, experience and practices. • Re-establish an environment of stability indicating that lessons from the crisis have been learnt and that more rationalized and risk-adverse investments will occur. • Monitor the activities of multinational banks in order to identify foreign ownership malpractices. 3.3 Public Support and Industrial Actions Current Trend Η The issue of public support to unions is deeply affected by the crisis, during which is reported to be relatively low. This was due to the fact that banking staff was blamed for initiating part of the crisis in an attempt to accumulate profit by creating new risky products and not protecting the public from massive banking product exposure, particularly to loans. From the unions’ side, the crisis could at minimum produce beneficial conditions for raising more awareness over sensitive issues of the sector and restore the positive and coherent public image of the unions. Even if the crisis damaged the reputation of public workers, it constitutes an important opportunity to raise public support for the unions and enhance to consumers’ financial behaviour. Additionally, it also imports uncertainty into the field of industrial actions, initiating a debate within trade unions on how they could be modernized or practiced in a way that it will avoid traditional conflicts and integrate higher levels of pub- lic understanding. The topics of alternative protesting ways and modernization of industrial actions are issues of dialogue and knowledge exchange among European trade unions. Vision Statement In the desired future, the outcome of the crisis will produce a new relation of trust and cooperation between unions and public. As a result of this new relation, the public will per- ceive a better sense of financial behavior, with regards to the risk of investing into banking products. Furthermore, the trade union’s public image will be restored, in terms of dissemi- nating to the public their social will to protect them in their financial transactions with the banks, instead of appearing to make profit from the whole situation as inherent parts of 66
  • 67. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise the system itself. Trade unions will establish their position as social stakeholders and not as an interest group focusing only on its own concerns. Furthermore, industrial actions will occur only when necessary, will be fully supported by employees, disseminated effectively in the society and combine innovative means and ideas. Expected State There is no strong prediction over the number of industrial actions, which is expected to remain the same. As far as public support is concerned, although employees are partially blamed for the crisis, there are expectations on public support being raised as society rec- ognizes that employees are victims of the crisis or any form of instability and uncertainty in the sector. It could also be predicted that risky bank products will be eliminated to a large extent, in connection with a better financial public behavior. Gap Analysis The main gap is in the level of public support, which needs to be increased. Trade unions need to demonstrate an image as workers’ protection groups which function under the broad societal context, aware of how their decisions and initiatives affect the public. In terms of industrial actions, there is a need to modernize actions and develop more advanced dissemination mechanisms, which will result in more active interactive with the public and the unions’ members. The role of technology and new media needs to be considered and exploited. Recommendations and Actions • Invest in modern channels of raising public support and dissemination of industrial actions. For example, these channels might include Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) focusing on the opportunities provided by Web 2.0 in terms of social networking, disseminating and gathering information, taking input of public opinion, enhancing participation and collaboration in decisions. • Emphasize on the leading role of trade unions in assisting the public in making investment decisions. Create initiatives to enhance to the financial culture of the public. 67
  • 68. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 3.4 Union Density Rates Current Trend Density rates across partners are documented and vary from total participation in Cyprus and Portugal, to near 50% in Romania and lower percentages in Italy. Apart from the overall union density rate, important conclusions can be derived from its synthesis. For example: the percentage of young employees registered, which is reported to be falling during the last years or comparative percentages between male and female members. It should also be noted that collecting and analyzing data in order to calculate union density rates and produce comparable statistics is not always a simple task, as for example explained by (31), especially in terms of identifying potential union members. Best practices demonstrate that achieving high or even total participation percentages is affected by various factors. These factors, apart from political and legislative working issues, also include special conditions, like historical background, which apply in each country and create social diversities. For example, ETYK’s success in Cyprus of enjoying 100% participation and the general eeling of trust and cooperation among union and employees is influenced by the fact that Cyprus is a geographically small country, thus providing the opportunity to better implement and monitor strategic decisions. It also helps in establishing more personal, less hierarchical relationships with members. Another best practice is SBC in Portugal, in which participation is also 100%, based on the fact that the union is fully responsible for providing health and medical treatment in replacing the State. Vision Statement Achieving 100% density union rate is the union’s objective. It is critical to their financial abilities and existence, also influencing strength within society and power to conduct negotiations. However, certain dimensions need to be examined regarding absolute participation percentages. One is how active this participation is, in terms of actual will of employers to be represented and commit towards this representation. Another is the fact that registering everyone assumes that the structure and supporting mechanisms of the union, in terms of quality and variety of services will be able to sustain it. In practice, this is not always feasible in massive scale according to present day conditions. Expected State Member density rates will decrease or remain the same, especially by taking into account the data from the questionnaires results and recent reports (32). This rather pessimistic view probably sources from the uncertainty that the crisis introduced into the banking sec- tor and general working conditions around Europe. There is also concern about how mana- gerial decisions and initiatives or policy changes in union’s structures might affect workers will and actual need to be part of a union. For example, manager by objective (MBO) 68
  • 69. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise initiatives and bonuses tend to create a “divide and conquer” atmosphere among employ- ees, related to issues of individualism. Additionally, there is a tendency in certain member states to create work councils, which implement more hierarchical representation struc- tures, making employees feel that they are represented without being members of the unions themselves. This fact is also combined with the practice of having collective agree- ments applied erga omnes and non-members enjoying the same rights and benefits (31). Gap Analysis The obvious gap between expected and desired future situations with regards to union den- sity rates is between actual percentages and total participation as quantitative goals. In fact, this challenge is supplementary to increasing the quality of the context under which this participation occurs. This means that besides increasing union’s densities, the gap also lies in issues of participation quality from the workers side and service quality from the union side. The underlying infrastructure to deal with social complexity, support and enhance union participation in spite of diversities or other conditions that might occur is probably the actual gap, rather than the quantitative differences themselves. Recommendations and Actions • Better and more services and benefits to union members: identify these services, which in addition to treatments could be for example training. • Work on political and other cultural diversities: investigate deeper into what causes insufficient will to participate from the worker side, besides payment of membership fees. • Rebuilt positive and coherent public image, justify and control industrial actions. • Introduce common methods of data gathering and analysis; ensure the validity of actual percentages. • Analyze and import best practices. • Reduce hierarchical structures, such as work councils, identify other “divide and conquer” practices and try to eliminate them 69
  • 70. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ 3.5 Collective Bargaining and Union Impact at Negotiation Levels Current Trend The current trend has been for collective bargaining, one of the main trade unions functions, to operate at the national sectoral level as dominant. The ability to influence collective bargaining at negotiation levels is a critical success factor for every union. At the present day, there is an effort to change collective bargaining procedures in Europe, as employers tend to ask for more flexibility at the enterprise level. Progress has also been made in achieving more common and centralized collective bargaining procedures at the European level, although there are feasibility concerns. Moreover, diversities exist around Europe regarding union impact at negotiation level, especially between new and old members, Western and Eastern Europe. Vision Statement The main vision is to develop a strong system of European sectoral social dialogue in order to achieve high labour standards for European employees. National policy needs to be clear, transparent and fair and based on this foundation, proceed at negotiations at the enterprise level. In addition, European Union intervention is beneficial in terms of monitoring the procedures at transnational level and establishing initiatives such as codes of ethics or legislation guarantying the survival of the social security, which is now secured only by the banks themselves. The procedural complexity of social dialogue is sufficient for achieving transparency, but not complex enough to act as a mean of lowering its efficiency. Expected State According to the questionnaire results, there are some interesting findings about future expectations in terms of collective bargaining. Although employees tend to expect social dialogue procedures to be increased, they are not optimistic about the consequences of this fact concerning the ability of unions to influence their outcome. They believe that National Sectoral Level will remain dominant, but they also strongly predict that the importance of collective bargaining both at the enterprise and at the international European level will increase. 70
  • 71. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise Gap Analysis There are two main identified gaps with respect to the level of collective bargaining and union impact at negotiation levels. The gap at the level of collective bargaining is on the expected shift at the enterprise level which needs to be prevented. As far as the union’s impact is concerned, the gap concerns the ability of unions to influence more complex social dialogue structures or intervene collectively at the enterprise level. Recommendations and Actions • Share experience and promote European initiatives supporting the procedures of the European Social Dialogue in the banking sector. • Prevent the shift of important negotiations at the enterprise level. 3.6 European Union Dialogue and Convergence Current Trend Two of the main objectives of DialogoS+ are sharing knowledge and experiences around Europe, as well as identifying and transferring good practices in the sector among partners. One of the project concerns was to examine the level of convergence among partners and suggest frameworks that will contribute to this cause. At the present day, and due to the combined efforts of DialogoS+, there is an on-going process of collaboration and dialogue among European trade unions. However, diversities within European Union in issues such as financial, cultural, tradition and mentality are strong and pose a strong barrier to such initiatives. Bridging all gaps in Europe might not be possible in the short term future, but European regulations that will establish minimum standards of uniformity and success during negotiations for collective agreements are welcomed and expected to be beneficial, especially for new members. 71
  • 72. Εuropean Project DialogoS+ Vision Statement In an ideal European Union (not only in the banking sector), social dialogue mechanisms are strong enough to facilitate mutual collaboration and prevent conflicts. The main vision is to unite social partners in building a social Europe on top of the financial Union, always with respect to inherent heterogeneities. Ideally, European initiatives should establish the basic requirements for a social protection system, without minimizing the national sectoral level which still remains the most important level of negotiations. The main consequence of the above will be, besides ameliorating working conditions, to prevent next generation crisis from occurring. Expected State One of the main questionnaire objectives was to harvest workers’ opinions about how working conditions will be regulated in the future. Based on these results, it seems that deeper convergence is expected to occur in issues such as working time, health and safety, while in issues such as additional bonuses, wages and training, the expectations are not very high and rather indicate the opposite direction: a move towards the enterprise regulatory level. Expert opinions on the expected future state express the same concerns as well: although collaboration and dialogue are welcomed in all forms, there are no realistic predictions that, at least within the next 10 years, any outstanding achievements could be implemented towards this direction. In other words, higher levels of convergence within Europe are welcomed, but are expected to be more utopian than realistic at least in the near future. Gap Analysis The gaps on what can be achieved in establishing better social protection mechanisms within the European Union is the strategic focus. Basic questions to be answered are: how diversities and other factors causing dichotomies can be overcome? What kind of regulatory transnational initiatives in the sector could provide a clear added value to collective bargaining? What kind of best practices can be transferred around Europe and how? Is it possible to work towards a joint framework on what should be achieved? Recommendations and Actions • Propose initiatives, such as further projects, develop and strengthen communication and dialogue procedures, commit towards fruitful collaboration. • Investigate into the diversities that prevent European convergence and establish frameworks to overcome them. 72
  • 73. Design, Implementation and Analysis of the Forecasting Exercise 4. Concluding Remarks and Next Steps Adapting to the complex challenges of the new economy requires innovative approaches upon traditional processes and a broader thinking on how organizations and communities of all kinds should or ought to develop their strategies towards their involved stakeholders. When it comes to traditional organizations like trade unions which by their nature play a central role in sensible social issues such as working relations, extrovert initiatives resulting in more collaboration are expected. The powerful means of technology and the new status of the knowledge economy create an environment which both facilitates and requires the transformation of available experiences, lessons learnt, good and bad practices into useful knowledge which could be capitalized and disseminated into transferable skills and strategic decisions. The concept of “roadmapping thinking” proved beneficial towards this direction as a main activity of DialogoS+. It assisted in identifying the current trends in banking sector employ- ment relations and the main challenges for regulation through social dialogue. Indeed, it has been helpful benchmarking “national gaps” and differences in national industrial relations’ systems, through which employment relations in the banking sectors are regulated. Although the focus of social dialogue is to remain national in the coming years, as part of the “Europeanization” process, there is a need and ability to develop common agendas arising from common trends in restructuring national banking sectors. The implementation of the roadmapping exercise provided key factors and integrated the aspects of evaluating key trends in developing common agendas for mutual learning and coordinated action. Roadmapping, as a collaborative strategic decision-making tool and a knowledge creation and sharing process, can be further developed and elaborated in order to improve comparative knowledge among the actors of social dialogue in the European banking sector and become an established practice for strategic planning and evaluation of social dialogue initiatives. Despite certain practical limitations and barriers, DialogoS+ was successful both as an outcome and a process itself. Communities which bear similar characteristics, such as trade unions and federations in other sectors, established interest groups, policy discussion forums and international networks could benefit from this knowledge in future initiatives. Adapting to the complex challenges of the new economy requires flexibility and an open- minded attitude. The lessons learnt from DialogoS+ will hopefully constitute a starting point of more efficient dialogue in the banking sector, resulting in better collaboration among social stakeholders such as trade union officials, employers and employees, policy makers and the public. 73
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