21 December 2021

MOD Guarding Service update and site closures

MyHR confuses the issue of leave; OMEC recruitment; defence estate optimisation.

Issues around HRMS/MyHR are causing problems and much stress for members, particularly the move to calculating and recording annual leave and public and privilege holidays in net hours. The issue of MGS changing from gross hours to net hours is not a problem in itself, but leads to situations where MGS will be recording one thing, but claiming another.

There must be absolutely no detriment and no loss of leave entitlement for any non-standard work patterns as a result of a computer system being introduced.

We are trying to impress upon MGS the importance of having a comprehensive set of guidelines and instructions to avoid any confusion in their management team. However, the issue of how to account for public holidays (PPH) has been escalated to MPC (Major Policy Committee) level for urgent resolution. The basic problem seems to be that CivHR thinks that a PPH is a day off – and indeed for most of us that is the case. But that does not apply to shift workers for whom a PPH is either a working day or a rest day. Neither of those are the same as a day off and the existing HRMS/MyHR processes cannot account for that. We can broker a set of guidelines with CivHR on all this for all TLBs (Top Level Budget holders) to follow. 

MGS continues to recruit fresh staff under the OMEC TACOS. Whilst they do not appear to have any trouble in attracting applicants, it is still too soon to see what the long-term effects of OMEC will be. Will MGS have problems retaining staff? Will the staff have problems with fatigue and burn-out? We will start looking at some of these figures in the spring to get a proper picture of OMEC and its effect on individuals. We are also continuing to hold MGS to the guarantee that OMEC will not impact on legacy staff in any way. If colleagues have any information pertaining to OMEC and its effects please speak to your union rep.

Defence Estate Optimisation

We continue to work with MGS and their customers where we have sites earmarked for closure under this initiative. Up until now, where sites have closed or where MGS have no longer been required, we have had a good track-record in ensuring that no-one is made compulsorily redundant. There is no reason that cannot continue. The latest site facing closure is Wethersfield and, by the nature of its location, it is difficult to relocate officers to nearby sites. We continue to work with and press both MGS and MDP management to ensure the best outcome for everyone. One slight hiccup was an apparent Exit Scheme cap imposed by the Cabinet Office minister but with help from several PCS full time officers we have resolved that satisfactorily.