Industrial action involving field service
engineers from technology vendor NCR will spread to Victoria this
weekend, after up to 90 staff walked off the job yesterday in
three other states.
Up to 40 Victorian staff will strike for four days from
Saturday morning, according to the Australian Services Union
(ASU), which is coordinating the action. The dispute centres on pay levels.
Staff from New South Wales (NSW) will return to work next Monday 20
March, the ASU's NSW and ACT Services branch secretary Sally
McManus said in a phone interview today with ZDNet Australia,
with staff from South Australia and Queensland returning to work
tomorrow and Thursday 16 March respectively.
Although the ASU claimed the strike could cause chaos to IT
systems at airports, banks and educational institutions around
the nation, with McManus saying some banks' ATM machines had
already broken down, NCR customers have so far remained
"We don't believe it will have any impact on our ATM network,"
a spokesperson for the Commonwealth Bank said. "They [NCR] only
do major hardware problems, most of our day to day servicing is
done by our staff and other providers."
"It's not really a material issue for us in that I think only
20 of our 15,000-16,000 ATMs are impacted by that industrial
action. So I think we're quite confident the impact on our
customers will be quite minimal," said a spokesperson from ANZ
Although McManus said minor delays had occurred at Sydney
Airport last night due to a broken ticketing machine, Qantas
passed on any blame to its suppliers.
"We don't have a direct relationship with NCR. I believe some
of our suppliers do work with NCR, but they've all assured us
that we won't be in any way affected and there won't be any
disruptions," a spokesperson for the carrier told ZDNet Australia
in a short phone interview.
In an e-mailed statement, NCR reiterated that it had "implemented a
range of contingency measures to ensure that we continue to
provide high levels of services to our customers," and would
continue to do so in the face of any new industrial action in
"We can confirm that services to our customers continue at
near normal levels," the company said.
McManus said morale among the striking staff was "really high"
and they were resolved to continue with the action.
"We will need to escalate towards the end of the week if
there's still no movement from the employer," she said.
"We're planning a picket outside their North Sydney head
office. That'll probably be later on in the week."