Although Voda staff in both Germany and Ireland benefit from representation, Voda UK "has decided to follow the statutory recognition route, which provides a legal framework that will ensure all parties are fairly represented. Vodafone continues to value open and direct communication with its employees." Meaning they won’t talk to a Union until they’re told they have to by law.
The union had hoped that a deal could be agreed with Vodafone on a voluntary basis, without the need for relying on a decision by a third party.
Connect’s Director of Organisation and Development, Steph Marston, said: "We are disappointed that Vodafone does not seem willing to negotiate with us about voluntary recognition, and seems determined that we should use the legal default route of applying for recognition via the Central Arbitration Committee."
"A substantial majority of the people working in Regional Operations North are members of Connect and are calling on Connect to help them get the right to negotiate with their employer on important issues at work. Whilst Vodafone did initially agree to engage in discussions around a voluntary agreement, these talks came to nothing. Now Connect’s members are impatient to see movement towards union recognition."
A Vodafone spokperson said: ‘Vodafone values open and direct communication with employees, but does not believe that the most effective way of ensuring this is via external third-party representation.’