Mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) specialists have secured better pay and pension provisions under a new wage settlement.
A 7% increase in hourly pay has been agreed from October this year – with a further 3% in hourly grade rates agreed from October next year.
It follows negotiations on behalf of industry employers between the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) and Unite, and represents a pay increase of 10% over two years.
An earlier offer was rejected by Unite in June, but employers returned with improved terms following further consultation with BESA members in July.
This was put to a vote and accepted by the union membership earlier this month.
In addition to improved travel and responsibility allowances, employer and employee pension contributions will also rise by 1% of basic pay from October 2024.
This is not voluntary, and the employer contribution is dependent on an employee contribution, which takes total contributions to 6% and 5% respectively.
“This round of wage negotiations has been extremely challenging but, with support from BESA’s Employment Policy Committee and the membership, I believe the parties have achieved the right deal for employers and employees,” said BESA’s head of employment affairs, Paula Samuels.
“Rising costs and pressures on profit margins mean conditions are difficult for everyone in the sector, but fortunately the positive relationship that exists between union representatives and the Association allows us to negotiate constructively and in a spirit of mutual trust and co-operation leading to this positive outcome.”
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