Pay ballot needs ‘Big Organising’ tactics
In the run up to the next pay ballot the concept of ‘Big Organising’ will be brought fully into use to massively increase the power of the union, with plans including a huge phone-banking session involving 1,000 members. Read more

‘Canary Club’ hosts Festival of Democracy to get members involved
Generating mass involvement in the union is one of the top priorities of the moment, and reps in Canary Wharf have conjured up some creative ideas to get people interested, including a performance by a socialist magician. Read more

Recruiting Advocates: ‘We’re fostering the avalanche approach’
As PCS’s campaign to recruit an ‘army of Advocates’ marches on, reps at Heathrow managed to sign up 13 new volunteers at one drop-in meeting. Read more

Pilot residential course kicks off new era for PCS reps training
PCS reps from across the UK attended an exciting pilot residential trade union education course in Yorkshire in the new year, as big changes to the way we train our reps got under way. Look out for the new PCS Academy prospectus. Read more

PCS Learning: ‘Just being a member isn’t enough’
Hear from the PCS reps who took part in the five-day pilot residential course, ‘Next Steps’. Read more

Representing members: union reps’ training enters exciting new areas
PCS now supports reps with training and guidance in helping members with many issues that affect their rights and welfare at work, including neurodiversity, domestic abuse, sexual harassment, cancer, trans equality, menopause, and mental health. Read more

Unfair dismissal upheld after refusal to delay hearing
An important decision relating to union members being accompanied by their reps at disciplinary hearings has been made by an Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT). Read more

Activism and recruitment a winning combination
Meetings are being held across the UK to talk to members about getting involved in the pay campaign, as part of our ‘Six Steps to Winning’ the next ballot. Increasing recruitment and activism are crucial first steps. Read more

Branch AGM plans are key to ballot preparation
We’re asking reps to aim for a target of 25% attendance at their upcoming branch AGMs, as mass engagement with members is the only way to win an industrial action ballot on pay. Read more

PCS training to get more new members involved
Changes to the PCS Academy offerings include a new one-day ‘Introduction to PCS’ course to make it easier for new members to get involved in union activity. Read more

Building, Growing, Winning with digital organising
PCS is preparing to launch a new digital web portal for members and reps, to replace iMembership and the Document Library, as part of a roll-out of new applications focusing on our Building, Growing, Winning strategy. Read more

Equality: breaking down barriers to union involvement
Events to bring together all equality groups to talk about issues like mental health and sexual harassment, as well as addressing barriers to union involvement, are being held in PCS regions in the new year. Read more

‘Big Conversation’ will boost ballot preparations
A plan to hold face-to-face conversations with 12,000 members and non-members is being launched by the Home Office group and other branches are encouraged to take up the idea as part of our pay ballot ‘steps to winning’ plan. Read more

PCS Advocates can help to create a ‘union culture’
We’re taking steps to further define and promote the role of PCS Advocates, who are key to winning our next ballot, creating well-organised workplaces, and fostering a confident ‘union culture’. Read more

Focus on larger branches in pay ballot preparations
Efforts to significantly increase the level of recruitment and union activism in some of PCS’s larger branches are under way, as analysis of the summer pay ballot shows a clear link between lower levels of activism and lower voting figures. Read more

Moving forward – PCS pay campaign 2019
Our union’s pay campaign for 2019 is already under way, and plans include reps’ workshops, building organisation in key branches, recruiting new members and activists, and getting ballot-ready. Read more

Fight goes on – building our union
What the union has been through with the national pay ballot has been “tough” but has ultimately put us in a stronger position from which to build. Read more

Reflecting on the ballot
Reps are using their ballot campaign experiences to build on the momentum achieved, identify tactics that worked and plan for the next steps. Read more

Representing Members: ‘If only they’d listened to our member’
We hear from a branch rep about an unusual tribunal case that ruled a court officer was covered by the Equality Act because of severe peri-menopausal symptoms. Read more

Pay ballot: winning the ballot
What you need to know from the branch guide ‘key steps to winning an industrial action ballot’, and what reps took away from our ballot training workshops. Read more

Pay ballot: getting the message across to members
The most important task during the pay ballot period is talking to every member about the significance of their vote. What’s the best way to approach it? Read more

Pay ballot: how we're getting the vote out
Two reps tell us what their branches are doing to engage members, maximise the union’s visibility at work and exceed the required minimum turnout of 50%. Read more

Pay ballot: ‘How I get PCS advocates on board'
We need PCS Advocates now more than ever. Rep Bridget Corcoran has recently recruited more than 20 Advocates, many of whom are women. What’s her secret? Read more

Representing members: ‘The important thing is I get results’
DWP rep and disability campion John Cole sets out his tips for taking members’ cases to an employment tribunal. Read more

Signing up more Advocates is key to building PCS
Increasing the number of Advocates is vital for building higher participation and improving diversity among activists – and we’re aiming to have 10,000 by 2020. Read more

Life as a Union Learning Rep
Union Learning Reps (ULRs) are a valued piece of the PCS jigsaw at work, but the role is sometimes less understood than others. We talk to five ULRs about the role. Read more

Representing Members: ‘Unless you try you don’t stand a chance’
We hear how one rep went about helping a disabled member reach an agreement with an employer who wanted to reduce their sickness absence trigger points. Read more

PCS Academy: Educating and supporting reps key to building our union
PCS is reviewing how it trains reps and members in the skills they need for their union roles, with the new PCS Academy. Read more

Reps of the future: "Without the union, things just stay the same"
CSCS Activate talks to a 24-year-old rep who has been put forward by PCS for a TUC programme that will see 150 new young, mostly female, reps being trained this year as part of their 150th anniversary celebrations. Read more

Help PCS fight racism at national demos
PCS is backing a series of national Stand Up to Racism demonstrations on 17 March. Activists are urged to support it and to use events as a way get members more involved with union activities. Read more

Representing Members: Talk it through with an experienced rep
In the latest of our columns from activists, Davina Camadoo, who works at the DWP in Avon passes on some of the things she’s learned from representing her members. Read more

Organising to win 1: ‘We are patient, disciplined and methodical’
As a union, how do we actively seek out and nurture the most respected grassroots leaders to strengthen our organisation in the workplace?  That was the core question at the heart of an inspirational visit to PCS by union organiser Jane McAlevey. Read more

Organising to win 2: testing the strength of the membership
Jane McAlevey’s main organising focus is on forming ‘high participation’ unions at workplace level. Key to assessing the strength of your membership is to conduct a series of ‘structure tests’, she explains. Read more

HMRC project tackles recruitment head on
An urgent recruitment drive in HMRC is well under way, with the aim of improving membership density and activism in the group. PCS organising officer Laura Bee reports on what they’ve been doing in the Midlands. Read more

Representing members: analysing personal casework
In the first of our regular columns on representing members, personal case lead for the Home Office group, Malcolm Davey, explains how they’ve gathered data on more than 800 personal cases and are using it to bring about improvements and organise. Read more

Young members get active to boost involvement
Activities ranging from social events to specialist talks and yoga sessions were held during November to help recruit young members and apprentices and get them more involved in the union. Read more

Project launched to boost HMRC membership
PCS is pouring resources into improving union membership levels in the HMRC group, with a three-month project that will run until December. Read more

Representing members – we want your stories
Share your success stories, experiences and tips for a new regular Activate column that will deal with the day-to-day issues you face while representing your members. Read more

Use equalities events to increase participation
Black History Month being marked throughout October is an ideal reminder that PCS activists can use events and anniversaries to encourage union participation from members in under-represented groups. Read more

Recruitment at core of union’s future
Growing the membership through systematic workplace recruitment campaigns is a core objective for PCS, and we’ve now agreed to a target of 200,000 members by 2020. Find out how some branches are taking on the challenge. Read more

Anti-union law means we must be ‘DD ready’
The new Trade Union Act means it’s more important than ever to ensure members are ready to pay their union subs by direct debit, as check-off could now be removed from other departments and employers. Read more

Guide on recruiting at inductions
Union learning Download our new ‘how to’ guide on recruiting new staff and apprentices. Facilities are available to talk to new starters at their induction meetings - take action on day one! Read more

Union Learning key to apprenticeships strategy
Union learning How the PCS’s learning agenda, combined with a new deal with the Cabinet Office, can help civil service apprentices and the union. Read more

Safeguarding the future: recruiting apprentices
With around 30,000 apprentices being taken on by the civil service, reps are urged to recruit them, support them through their training and encourage them to become active in the union. Read more

Organising to build the union
PCS has turned a corner recently. Our draft organising strategy – which branches are urged to discuss ahead of conference – outlines our objectives as we strive to keep building the union in both the public and commercial sector. Read more

Recruitment success – keep up the good work
We’ve had great success with recruitment to PCS in recent months, thanks in part to reps in some areas using staff induction sessions to sign up groups of new members. Read more

What did the unions ever do for me
A rep explains how the DWP Fylde branch recruited 242 members at induction sessions last year. Read more

Updated 12 February 2019

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