Fujitsu IT staff to hold three-day strike

Unite members at the IT services company plan to strike next week over proposed cuts to jobs and pensions

Staff at Fujitsu Services will go on strike for three days next week over proposed cuts to jobs and pensions.

The action will begin on 12 November and continue on the 13th and 16th. According to the notice of industrial action served to Fujitsu by Unite on Thursday, employees will work to rule and contract, and follow a policy of non-co-operation. There will also be a ban on overtime and on workers using their cars for company business, unless they receive an unsocial hours payment or an allowance respectively.

The members' decision to strike follows Unite's announcement of the results of a strike ballot on Monday. In October, the union polled its more than 1,500 members at the IT services company around Britain. A majority of 74 percent voted for strike action, and 92 percent were in favour of industrial action short of a strike.

Fujitsu spokesman Graham Goulden declined to say whether the company had sent a formal response to Unite's notice of strike action. "We're disappointed they've made that decision, as we're still in the consultation process," he told ZDNet UK on Friday.

Goulden added that dialogue between Fujitsu and Unite is "continuous", and that Fujitsu had made contingency plans to ensure services to its customers were maintained during the strike.

The Public and Commercial Services union, which represents 850 members at Fujitsu, told ZDNet UK on Friday that it was still negotiating with Fujitsu, and had no immediate plans for strike action. In a recent ballot for industrial action, 68 percent of its members voted to strike, and 85 percent voted in favour of industrial action short of strike.

Fujitsu's plans to make changes to its pension scheme could affect around 4,000 employees, whose total pay packages could be reduced by around 20 percent as a result, according to Unite.

The global IT services provider, which employs 12,500 people in the UK, imposed a company-wide pay freeze earlier this year. In addition, Fujitsu announced in August that it planned to make 1,200 of its British workforce redundant by the end of this year.