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Relocation of work base issues

(58 Posts)
PookieDo Mon 08-May-17 16:10:26

Hi please bear with me while I try to explain and I would so appreciate some advice.

I have been in a role for about 6 months. It's very similar to other roles in the past I have had, senior admin but I do not manage any staff.

Early this year 2 things happened: I was offered and signed up onto a 2 year training course and at the same time, a restructure began to happen.

My direct manager is included in the restructure and has assumed I am compliantly and happily moving base too. I have not at any point been asked by HR whether I want to go. I have approached them and asked where I stand and have had no response. My manager has not really listened to me when I have expressed concerns about moving apart from to promise to try to meet my needs (such as flexible working and working from home). I believe my manager will become difficult and obstructive to me choosing to stay at my current base in another role. Other slightly less senior team members feel they have a need for me here and are fighting for me to stay.

The base is 4x further than my current base from home. It also will involve a complete change of hours to travel and also involve extra expense of school transport and mileage. I'm also concerned about the flexibility not being written into my contract.

I'm more concerned that I have become an object who no one has consulted. I never ever would chiose to work in the new location as it's a horrible drive, will isolate me and will make my 2 year study and home life very difficult.

What course of action do I take? I feel like it's already decided despite no one consulting me!

DisappearingFish Mon 08-May-17 21:02:17

How many miles away is the new base from the old office?

PookieDo Mon 08-May-17 22:46:03

20 miles - 40 mile round trip

PookieDo Mon 08-May-17 22:48:36

Due to the location and my location this is mostly on congested very very busy A roads - think ye olde worlde road networks

Etymology23 Mon 08-May-17 22:48:52

And how long does that 20miles take? I've got places near me where 20 mins would be a 25 minute commute, and others where it would take an hour.

Etymology23 Mon 08-May-17 22:49:29

First minute should be miles sorry!

namechangedtoday15 Mon 08-May-17 22:50:47

What does your contract say about place of work? Most modern contracts say your place of work "will be X town or within a reasonable distance as required by the business".

PookieDo Mon 08-May-17 22:54:43

It has taken me 45 mins one way in the middle of the day when I recently went there with no significant traffic on the roads, clearish roads.

I haven't had the chance to go at rush hour but when I look at it on a map at that time of the day, 8am it says 1hr15 mins

I live in a village and my children cannot walk to their school. i drop them off every day in the town I work in and it takes 15 mins from home-school-office.
I'm not spoilt - I purposefully chose it for this reason over other jobs - the location

PookieDo Mon 08-May-17 22:56:14

My contract does not specify a distance but it says 'you may be required to work from bases within the company' its quite vague.
I do sometimes travel to other locations, we all do, but from our bases and during work hours iyswim

Etymology23 Mon 08-May-17 23:01:10

That sounds like a truly awful commute. I would fight tooth and nail to stay in your current location. My commute varies a lot and my quality of life is vastly vastly higher when I have a commute less than about 45 mins.

highinthesky Tue 09-May-17 02:27:46

With under 2 years of employment in the firm, you're in any position of strength (unless you are in a different role in a firm that you have been in for over 2 years?). Either way, understand that risk is an almost inevitable part of the restructing process. Raise it formally as part of the consultation process but expect nothing in return.

Your line manager is doing all they can. Contact a union rep if necessary.

DisappearingFish Tue 09-May-17 05:56:55

If 20 or more employees are affected then there has to be a formal consultation.

Even though it's a big change, on paper it's "only" 20 miles. You do have a mobility clause in your contract. And you've only been there 6 months so you have accrued very few rights.

You either agree to relocate or face redundancy. If you do agree to relocate then you should try the negotiate the best deal possible.

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 07:07:46

I would look to leave but I am now stuck with the training course for 2 years and I am not sure whether I would have to pay the outstanding cost of this.
Overall I have many years service within the organisation just not in this role

highinthesky Tue 09-May-17 07:26:42

You are not stuck with anything, least of all cost if the course.

Yes organisational change can be tough to deal with, but you make your own choices. I'm starting to wonder if you're either new to the world of work or just entitled.

Because you sure as hell don't seem to understand that the organisation doesn't revolve around you. Believe it or not, the viability of the organisation comes first. If it didn't, no one would have a job.

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 07:32:22

I don't quite understand the tone of your post so thanks for your input but unless you are in my HR team you have no way of knowing about whether I would be liable for forfeiting my training costs either if I left

notanurse2017 Tue 09-May-17 07:34:43

I think the mobility clause is going to be an issue here, Op. I've been through similar regarding moving workplaces but luckily had a base very clearly set out in my contract. Which was just as well as HR were appalling- just kept telling me that I had to move, in the end I had to get legal advice. ACAS were also very helpful.

I don't think that you sound at all entitled. But you need to start being proactive, have coversations with your line manager and HR. Could you offer a compromise - ie work at new place once a week for instance?

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 07:44:59

I will try to be clearer. My contract has written on it my base where I am now but the mobility clause inside it.
I also am being informally offered flexible working which I am uneasy with because say my manager ups and leaves, I get a new manager who does not wish for me to work flexibly - this leaves me vulnerable.
I have approached HR many times for these answers (do I get a new contract?) and have received the answer of 'we don't know yet' or 'nothing has been decided/still in talks' and it gets later and later. I don't know WHEN the move happens, this is going to leave me out of pocket financially and I am feeling quite stressed over it all.
The new location is not ideal in other ways for career prospects it's isolated and I will struggle with my training course as I need access to certain resources.

I feel like I am just a resource - like a chair. Who will get packed up in a van next month and shipped out. Sorry if that makes me entitled the only thing I think I am entitled to is equal rights like other employees and respect. Emails that go out about the restructure come TO me but have everyone else listed in them except me!

highinthesky Tue 09-May-17 07:57:09

I had to be blunt OP, but it seems that you have finally grasped the reality of your situation, which is take it or leave it. Challenge flaws in the process by all means, but don't have expect anything more than an apology.

HR laws are EU-wide currently (I am assuming you work in the UK) and your HR department does not operate in its own microcosm. You are only going to get your own way if you show some co-operation. Otherwise you'll be shown the door with a severance package.

ColourofMagic Tue 09-May-17 07:58:03

Do you have a union at your workplace? If so I'd approach them and think about joining (if you haven't already) as they are frequently involved in any relocation negotiations that impact on their members. If not I second a PP's suggestion of ACAS.

highinthesky Tue 09-May-17 07:59:48

Btw the relocation may be inconvenient, but you will be covered for costs according to an agreed formula under TUPE for s set period of time. During which you are free to adjust to the new situation, or find new work.

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 08:00:25

Still you don't make sense. I'm not refusing to cooperate, I am not being given any information. Zero info. Despite asking repeatedly. I am the cooperative, willing to negotiate or discuss party. I am getting nothing in return. No I do not want to go, but if I do have to go I at least expect information to be provided to me, a new contract, mileage information not just to be ignored until I go away.

highinthesky Tue 09-May-17 08:21:04

What don't you get? Nothing has been resolved yet which is why you can't be given any clear answers. Put your concerns in writing and they will be addressed in due course.

When the revised Ts and Cs of the contract are finalised everyone will be told at the same time, and TUPE will apply to some elements. I do understand your frustration but I can also see your antagonistic approach won't be doing you any favours.

Although why you aren't communicating through a union beats me. Do you really think you're the only one affected by the proposed changes?

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 08:34:11

I'm not part of the union although I will apply to join on the advice of this thread. Everyone else more senior has been given consultation meetings and sent emails. So Almost everything I know 3rd hand

So my point (again) is that I am not being treated the same as I am more junior, disposable and unimportant. I think it's ok for me to feel this is being handled unprofessionally

PookieDo Tue 09-May-17 08:34:47

I think I am only antagonistic towards you, I have not been towards HR. I wouldn't think it would help me

LIZS Tue 09-May-17 08:40:58

The only way to deal with this is to request a direct conversation with your manager and hr. You could raise a grievance if you feel you are not being listened to and concerns addressed. However it boils down to either you can agree a formal flexible working agreement which mitigates some of the inconvenience or you will need to look for another job. Are you sure this wasn't discussed , even theoretically , at interview? Bear in mind that they could just let you go anyway, have you passed probation. What terms did you agree for the training costs in your contract, is that something you could continue with anyway?

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