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To ask who is going to stand up for all the administration and clerical staff

(55 Posts)
DoeEyedNear Wed 22-Jul-15 12:13:49

We have people fighting for doctors, nurses, teachers, firemen, soldiers, police officers... But no one ever seems to stand up for the hardest hit group of public sector workers. The office staff.

Is it because it's not seen as essential?

RachelRagged Wed 22-Jul-15 12:15:20

Hear Hear OP

I do admin part time ,, we are under valued smile

formerbabe Wed 22-Jul-15 12:20:24

I agree. But, I believe we have a very bizarre class system in the UK. ..administration staff despite often being some of the lowest paid workers, have to dress smartly, therefore they don't fit the stereotype. Well, that's my take on it anyway. Someone working in a manual job and going to work everyday in an overall may be earning double that of the smartly dressed office worker.

MrsVamos Wed 22-Jul-15 12:25:08

Fucks knows.

All the govt. seem to be interested in is pitting people against one another.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could all be in it together ?

SilverDragonfly1 Wed 22-Jul-15 12:25:40

I think admin is seen as 'women's work' and thus it's assumed that admin staff are just doing little jobs for pocket money. They also tend to take a lot of the flack for problems caused by understaffing, budget cuts etc as they are in the front line and so are not 'popular' in the way that other emergency service personnel are.

woodlands01 Wed 22-Jul-15 12:28:28

I am a teacher and follow my unions directive (NUT).
Are you not a member of UNISON?

Crimestopper Wed 22-Jul-15 12:51:07

I fall into this category, currently earning less than £8k p.a. and will lose £1300 per year under the tax credit changes. I would have a pay rise when the National Living Wage is introduced but I may well be made redundant by then. Pretty miserable all round.

DoeEyedNear Wed 22-Jul-15 12:55:53

woodlands I'm no longer clerical staff but have been in the past.

Would you have put your post on any of the Dr, nurse, teacher etc threads?

PinkSquash Wed 22-Jul-15 13:07:31

Unison or Unite take administrative & clerical members IIRC.

SnozzberryPie Wed 22-Jul-15 13:07:53

I'm in admin too. I think we're an easy target as we're low paid but not seen as essential in the same way as nurses, teachers etc. Although people would soon notice things start to fall apart if we weren't here, of course.

I'm in unison for what it's worth.

Ubik1 Wed 22-Jul-15 13:08:05


IvyWall Wed 22-Jul-15 13:12:10

The public sector also has the PCS

ChazzerChaser Wed 22-Jul-15 13:12:10

I complained to my MP about how idiotic the removal of back office staff in the NHS was and how it made my life, with a child with ongoing hospital needs much harder. If that helps. He looked surprised I didn't agree with the rhetoric and alarmingly like this was a new thought to him.

lardyscouse Wed 22-Jul-15 13:21:12

Anyone can join a union and get organised. PCS does well by its clerical staff.

meglet Wed 22-Jul-15 13:25:33

yanbu. stuff doesn't magically happen behind the scenes. administration keeps it going.

But the people running this country have never done a days administration in their lives so are oblivious to it.

Heels99 Wed 22-Jul-15 13:26:56

With self service, admin is a diminishing field and has become deskilled in some ways e.g secretaries and PAs are nowhere near the number they once were, much admin work has been replaced by technology e.g banking, many business have people do their own admin, there are hardly any administrators in the business I work in. Related fields though are doing well e.g data related roles. I would try to skill up in data or transition to an associated field e.g paralegal is I was an administrator.

Kayden Wed 22-Jul-15 13:32:58

YANBU. I work for social services. The admin support staff do not get the praise nor recognition that they deserve. We would fall apart without the admin workers. For example; it's now mandatory procedure that our safeguarding meeting are minuted by an admin worker. They arrange the meetings, co-ordinate the people (no mean feat) and are responsible for the rerecording in accordance with the law. This is one small part of their job but it forms a key part of safeguarding at risk adults. There's point in completing a protection plan if I can't share it with the police at a strategy meeting.

FlowerBomber Wed 22-Jul-15 13:34:27

It's all easy headline stuff isn't it? Because when the admin staff aren't there the work still needs to be done so it is the teachers, nurses and police officers who back fill the roles. It is much more expensive to pay a nurse to do the admin but that nurse still counts on the 'frontline' figures. Also if you maintain those frontline figures you can forget to mention that there are abstractions to do the admin.

Or you can just ignore the admin work that needs to be done and watch everything collapse around your ears.

GraysAnalogy Wed 22-Jul-15 14:30:52

Do it!

Who do you think creates the campaigns, creates the photos and letters that go viral? Who makes the public aware of what's going on and tries to get them on our side? The staff! Who created #ImInWorkJeremy, started a petition to vote no confidence, all the things that have hit the headlines and garnered the attention and empathy of thousands.

No-one is going to do it for you, start a movement and it will snowball. You just need to stick together and fight.

TheWernethWife Wed 22-Jul-15 14:38:26

PSC is a brilliant union and Mark Serwotka is a bloody hero

TheWernethWife Wed 22-Jul-15 14:40:01

Mean PCS - have to learn to read before posting !!!

ThroughThickAndThin01 Wed 22-Jul-15 14:42:19

I kind of agree with Heels, there doesn't seem to be the demand for admin jobs anymore. Or not on the scale there used to be. Dh runs a business from home which in the past would have needed at least one secretary/assistant probably two. With modern technology he and I do it all easily in minimum time.

I've tried to find admin work/an office job for the last year or so, and there is nothing around, I think those jobs are like gold dust now. Therefore as many people would happily take on an admin role, administrators haven't got much sway with what they can command in the workplace salary wise, benefits wise, etc.

Admin workers don't generally need the training a doctor, teacher, nurse etc would either, so aren't such a valuable employee in the workforce. And as above if someone leaves their job, I would imagine there are 50+ who wpiod love to fill it.

Ubik1 Wed 22-Jul-15 20:23:41

In large public sector organisations it's the admin staff who keep the show on the road. It's very different to doing admin for a small firm. I know administrators overseeing huge budgets and supporting extremely complex projects. They need a range of ICT skills and high standard of written and verbal communication skills too. I quake before Some of the PAs to senior managers in my organisation who are totally clued up and actually quite intimidating.

People think police officers, doctors, nurses and teachers can just 'backfill' these posts - and in some areas I'm sure they can - but a lot of admin is pretty complex and requires certain skills to do it well.

WhyStannisWhy Wed 22-Jul-15 20:25:56

A lot of it is now outsourced.

SoConfused15 Wed 22-Jul-15 20:42:34

I agree. I work for an Oxbridge university. "Admin" staff are frequently managers of significant budgets and staff which requires high level people skills, commercial acumen, the ability to negotiate and manage complex deals and contracts, including professional lawyers, accountants and others. Without us, the University would cease to function or the more highly paid academics would have to do our work, however we are often seen as unnecessary bureaucracy and a waste of space. I suspect it is exactly the same in hospitals.

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