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AOL boosts redundancy offer

2 November 2007

The NUJ chapel at AOL has won vastly improved redundancy terms following an industrial action ballot.

Chapel members voted 100 per cent in favour of action short of a strike, with almost 96 per cent in favour of strike action.

The strong ballot result resulted in an agreement with management to extend the enhanced terms for all staff facing redundancy until the end of 2008. This came after the AOL Employee Forum, which represented all AOL staff throughout the redundancy consultation, had already agreed to an inferior deal.

A voluntary redundancy scheme to attempt to avoid compulsory redundancies entirely was also secured after union pressure, as well as changes to the scoring process for deciding on redundancies.

The chapel has now removed the threat of industrial action.

AOL plans to outsource significant content production to Bangalore, India.

Lawrence Shaw, NUJ assistant organiser for new media, said:

“While the loss of jobs is always regrettable, the NUJ chapel and their representatives have done a great job in standing firm and winning the best deal for members – not only for those who are leaving, but also for those who are staying.”

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ president, said:

"The NUJ is the only recognised union at AOL and we have secured terms that will benefit all employees facing redundancy. If all AOL staff were unionised, I am certain we could have done even better.
"Management has taken the union seriously. Now there will almost certainly be no compulsory redundancies whatsoever, and those who want to leave will have a decent settlement."

Tags: , aol, new media, redundancies, ballot