26 June 2010

Signs of austerity

The amount of job advertisements in the transport trade press hasn't relented during these austere times. Indeed, it could be argued that the level of 'positions vacant' has risen, if you go by the amount of job ads seen in routeone, CBW and New Tran-sit.

With all non-essential government departments likely to see a 25% reduction in their funding over the length of the current parliament, it was a little surprising to see one organisation offering the following EIGHT position to successful candidates on p59 of New Trans-it recently. See if you can guess who it is!
  1. Transport Operations and Performance Manager, £42-48k
  2. Transport Partnership Manager (Rail), £40-45k
  3. Transport Partnership Coordinator, £23-27k
  4. Area Manager (Black Country), £38-42k
  5. Area Manager (Coventry), £38-42k
  6. Network Coordination Manager, 3 vacancies, all £32-36k each
That's a combined annual outlay of up to £312k - all for what could largely be described as 'non jobs' by many within the transport industry.

The 'gong' goes to Centro, the West Midlands Passenger Transport Executive.

This pulls very firmly at the heart strings that have been alluded to on numerous occasions by members of the Coalition Cabinet. When the private sector has had to make far-reaching cuts, some areas of the public sector just carry on regardless. Eight positions for the West Midlands' PTE, costing a third of a million points a year, at a time when all other public sector workers are to commence a two-year pay freeze is completely unacceptable.

Would Centro honestly have us believe their organisation would not be able to operate without such positions? Paying someone £48,156 p/a to monitor the PTE's performance rather defeats the object!

And, hot on Centro's heels is the Board of Directors at the absolutely-not-nationalised-yet-show-how-government-enforced-cuts-will-bring-down-the-national-debt Network Rail, who have awarded themselves £1.2 million in bonuses. A small point to consider that was largely omitted by the national press is that the directors themselves did not have the final say on the amount awarded and that, apparently, the total payout was "considerably lower" that that which was initially offered.

The LEYTR Stig contacted us to say: "Feel sorry for the poor souls at NR - of the £1.2 million, they'll only get to see a maximum of £75k in the pot after the tax man has his share". This is something that will at least put a smile on Chancellor Osborne's face.

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