Royal Mail strikes: What does this mean?

As of June 30th, 2022, there are talks of two separate Royal Mail strikes taking place. These strikes may disrupt UK mailing services while unions negotiate the terms of their employment. We will continue to monitor how these strikes progress and make concessions within our business. 

Find out more about the status of each strike by following the links below:

  1. Postal workers strike
  2. Management strike

Royal Mail postal workers strike

Updated Information On The Royal Mail Management Strikes

August 10th Update

Royal Mail staff have set 4 dates to take strike action over an ongoing pay dispute. The Communication Workers Union (CWU) continue to demand a “dignified, proper pay rise”. The strike days will take place across August and September as follows:

  • August - Walkouts will take place place on Friday 26th and Wednesday 31st.
  • September - Walkouts will take place on Thursday 8th and Friday 9th.

Previous Information On The Royal Mail Postal Workers Strike

July 19th Update

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) have announced that its members have voted in favour of strikes, but no official date has been announced. Here are the key updates:

  • Of the 97.6% of union workers who voted, 77% backed strike action in response to pay.
  • The CWU is demanding a “no strings attached” payrise for its workers, with a strike date being delayed to allow for negotiations with their employer.

July 7th Update

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) is voting on whether 115,000 Royal Mail postal workers should strike this year over their pay, with results expected on July 19th. 

With inflation rising, workers wages aren’t keeping up with the increased cost of living at a time when Royal Mail has reported record profits. Here are some of the key takeaways:

  • 115,000 CWU members of the Royal Mail are voting on whether to strike, and voting began on June 28th.
  • The Communication Workers Union (CWU), which represents 115,000 Royal Mail postal workers, are voting on whether to strike.
  • The potential strike is fuelled by rising inflation, causing a cost of living crisis for workers. Inflation is expected to reach over 11% in October.
  • Royal Mail recorded record profits, and some senior members have received bonuses in the region of £140,000.
  • The CWU has rejected a deal that would increase pay for workers within the union by around 5.5%. The CEO and board have increased pay by 2% for workers without strings attached. The remaining 3.5% increase is subject to agreement by the union.
  • Royal Mail has stated that their offer was “the biggest increase we have offered for many years, which was rejected by the CWU”.
  • Voting for CWU members began on June 28th, and the general secretary of the union is expecting the vote to be in favour of the strikes.
  • If the strikes go ahead, it could be the biggest action ever taken by their members, causing widespread disruption to Royal Mail postal services.
  • The results of the vote are expected on July 19th.

Read the CWU’s press release about the postal workers strike.

Royal Mail management strikes

Updated Information On The Royal Mail Management Strikes

Updated July 19th

The Unite Union has published information stating that the Royal Mail management strike will no longer go ahead.

This is the result of a ballot of 2,400 Royal Mail union workers who voted to accept an updated proposal by their employer on pay and working conditions. Here are the key takeaways:

  • Union members voted 63% in favour of accepting the proposal.
  • This, however, does not end the dispute, as further negotiations will now take place on issues unresolved in the updated proposal.
  • Mike Eatwell of Unite has said “Unite’s members today have accepted the senior management’s return to the negotiating table to improve upon the jobs already put back into the crucial delivery and collections services. Royal Mail’s changed approach is noticeable but there is further to go… there is more talking to do and further movement that must be made by Royal Mail for this dispute to be resolved”.

Previous Information On The Royal Mail Management Strikes

Updated July 7th

Royal Mail managers who are members of the Unite union have agreed to strike in the UK and Northern Ireland. The Unite Union have confirmed that strike action will take place between July 20th - 22nd.

The strikes are a result of plans to remove 700 delivery managers from their position and redeploy staff into positions with worse terms and conditions, notably a reduction in pay of up to £7,000.

  • Around 2,400 UK Royal Mail managers who are members of the Unite union have voted to strike, with 86% of their members in favour. 
  • Northern Ireland members voted 89% in favour of a strike.
  • Royal Mail claims that 700 managerial roles had been closed through voluntary redundancy and redeployment.
  • Unite and Royal Mail have failed to negotiate terms due to Royal Mail not changing their plans around redundancies.
  • Royal Mail has stated that there are “no grounds” for the strike, and reports of additional job losses outside of the reorganisation which has been in place since May 23rd are “not true”.
  • Unite has said that contingency plans are in place to ensure letter and parcel services remain operational in the event of a strike.

Read Unite’s announcement about the Royal Mail management strikes.

How are we preparing for the disruption?

We will continue to monitor the situation and update our customers on the outcome of these strikes while offering support and guidance on how to avoid disruption where possible. We will also actively look for ways to reduce this impact on our customers by adapting our internal processes and procedures. Please find below our current plans and guidance on how we intend to minimise the disruption:

  1. We offer alternative courier options for sending or forwarding letters and parcels from your account. These options will display within the platform when processing outgoing mail items, and their availability will depend on the destination address. 
  2. While we cannot control mail delivery in the event of a strike, we will liaise with our local sorting centre and assist with mail flow where possible.
  3. If you can, request that any mail being delivered to your UK Postbox address is sent via an alternative courier during the strike period.
  4. Following the announcement of a strike, and depending on the period this covers, we expect delays in Royal Mail processing. If necessary, we will deploy additional staff to ensure backlogged mail items are processed as swiftly as possible.
  5. If you’re sending or receiving time-sensitive documents, such as legal papers or passports, plan this in advance as soon as possible. Services such as guaranteed next day or signed for may not be delivered as expected and should not be relied on during and shortly after strike periods. 

As always, we will make every effort to minimise disruption for our customers, and we ask for your patience in the event of delays caused by actions outside our control. We welcome you to contact us with any questions in the meantime.

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August 10, 2022