It's started—volunteers to take the jobs

Published: Friday, 10 September 2010

BRITISH Waterways are advertising for a person to take charge of the redundancies to its staff.

The position is Head of Human Resources, and is advertised as being:

'Expected to play a key role in the wider aspects of people management across the organisation, bringing about the necessary cultural change amongst our people as BW moves out of the public sector and our successor develops a new identity as a civil society organisation reliant equally on both a paid and volunteer workforce that is well integrated and equally motivated'.

Which is clearly seen as promoting volunteers to take over the jobs at present held by its workers.

More than the prime minister

Our Political Journalist Allan Richards tells us the applications are being handled by Nigel Johnson, who has been a  BW director for 10 years, and recently appointed as Corporate Services Director, with a salary last year of £169,000 excluding bonus—significantly more than the prime minister.

Allan remarks:

"Not so long ago, BW were promoting Johnson as one of the few directors with experience of the third sector, having been a lawyer at a charity before joining BW. One is left wondering why he was appointed on such a massive salary if he did not have the expertise and leadership to handle this, so called, cultural change.

"It would be fair to say that the continuing fears of some bankside staff, first expressed at a picket of BW's AGM last year, are well founded."