Friday, 11 March 2016

Letter to CoSector

Sally Townsend
University of London

Dear Sally

We are writing to you to express our members’ deep reservations on the future direction of CoSector.
Since the change of management took place last year, we have been broadly supportive of your efforts to restructure the business in order for it to grow. We welcomed your apparent abandonment of the proposals to alter terms and conditions for new and existing staff; and in return we accepted the argument that the new senior management team would remain in place for the purposes of growing CoSector’s business.

However, developments in the past week, which seem to be widely known within all parts of CoSector, have cause great concern, not just for those directly affected, but other members who now fear for their futures’ within the organisation.

To be clear, we refer to the proposed changes to TCG Central Services team and Online Services team. If these proposals are implemented, it will lead to the compulsory redundancy of four staff, with the implication that future downsizing will occur once changes take place.

We were lead to believe that no redundancies would take place in the short term and certainly not before the publication of the long awaited business plan, which you have not provided to neither the Board of Trustees nor unions as of this date.  We appreciate that these matters should not be rushed into and consequently we strongly urge you to postpone these proposals for the time being.

You should note that UCU and UNISON have a policy of opposing all compulsory redundancies and we oppose these proposals now. We will be seeking to involve our respective national unions, via the London regional offices.

We find it very unfortunate that many of the concerned members believe that the faults of the business lie with the management that was imposed last year. In particular, the high cost base that is being shared amongst budgets, causing once surplus deriving teams to fall into a loss.  As we have said, we recognise that in order to grow and be successful CoSector needs good and effective management in place. This is not necessarily cheap.  However, your latest round of proposals implies that the business is trying to cut costs and downsize. This is not the strategy of a business trying to grow. Members can see this quite clearly and are dismayed.

We look forward to your response on this urgent matter.


Jon Bitmead
On behalf of the Senate House UCU branch
Sam Ferman

On behalf of the Senate House UNISON branch

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

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