After years of negotiations and delays, last month EDF Energy revealed that the first concrete had been poured for a permanent structure at Hinkley Point C. But just as the construction momentum picks up, a debate on pay rates has reared its head.
The dispute between unions (Unite and GMB) and some members of the project consortium is based around the proposed bonus rates which unions argue are insufficient to attract the calibre of workers that will be needed to complete the £18 billion project on time. According to reports, the unions have been consulting with the 700 strong workforce over the past few days (3-5 May) to decide whether or not to proceed with a strike ballot, so we will be watching the outcome of this very closely, with a further update planned for next week.
As a specialist engineering and construction recruitment business, Resourcing Solutions is working in partnership with candidates and clients to resource Hinkley Point jobs which have included Temporary Works Design, CAD Design and Site Agent candidates who are already working on site.
The appeal of the project is undeniable due to its scale and profile, and this is attracting interest from high calibre candidates. Specialist power recruiter at Resourcing Solutions, Gareth Bone says, “Hinkley Point is a geographically challenging site to recruit for and there is a definite war for talent as large coastal infrastructure projects continue to require the available resource such as Project Beatrice, East Anglia One and the new Roosecote Battery Storage facility which we are also supporting. To continue to be appealing to future employees, Hinkley will need to maintain good press relations and an excellent safety record. We are highly motivated to continue to promote and resource the project, and hope the discussions with EDF are swift and effective.”
A spokesman for plant developer EDF Energy responded to the concerns saying, “We are committed to a continuing dialogue on this issue with our contractor and trade union partners. Discussions are ongoing and our intention is to reach a mutually acceptable outcome. We have a strong partnership in place with the trade unions based on a set of landmark agreements that include pay and productivity. We share a commitment with them and our contract partners to provide high quality employment standards, alongside the best standard in health, safety, quality and productivity.”
If you are involved with the Hinkley Point project, what are your views on this situation?