Woolworths New Zealand and FIRST Union have signed a new Collective Employment Agreement that will see Woolworths New Zealand’s Primary Connect ambient distribution centre team receive an average wage increase of more than 12% over the next two years.
The new Collective Agreement will see Primary Connect team members receive a 7.1% wage increase backdated to 8 May 2023 and a further 5.2% increase in the second year.
It also introduces a range of new benefits including double time pay rates on public holidays, a premium for hours worked over the weekend, increases to bereavement leave, the addition of pandemic leave and a significantly higher starting rate for new team members.
Woolworths New Zealand Managing Director Spencer Sonn says it’s an important agreement to have signed.
“Our Primary Connect team is a critical part of our complex, national logistics network. We rely on the important work they do to keep our shelves stocked, and I’d like to thank them for showing up every day to do just that. This agreement is in recognition of the vital role that our Primary Connect team play in our business, and I trust they will see it as exactly that.
“I’m pleased we have reached this agreement, and I’d also like to thank FIRST Union for their constructive approach to these negotiations on behalf of their members, which has been invaluable in creating a robust and meaningful process.”
FIRST Union’s Lead Advocate for Distribution Centres Olly Paegotau described the collective bargaining outcome as an outstanding result for members across the motu and reiterated the negotiations were carried out in a productive and constructive manner.
“FIRST Union members have accepted a record high percentage of 7.1% increase followed by a further 5.2% in 12 months’ time. Our members were committed to achieve this settlement as a means of providing better pay and conditions to help support their families, under this time of high inflation.
“This year our negotiating team also found a renewed confidence in the negotiations with Woolworths New Zealand.”
The new Collective Employment Agreement includes:
- 1% wage increase backdated to 8 May 2023 and a further 5.2% increase in the second year
- Double time pay rates on public holidays
- A premium for hours worked over the weekend
- Increases to bereavement leave
- The addition of pandemic leave
- A significantly higher starting rate for new team members.
The new Collective Employment Agreement comes into effect immediately.