Staffing Levels

Seeing red (tabards)! Tubeworker Tue, 10/17/2017 - 00:00

Surveys by the independent transport watchdog London TravelWatch have consistently revealed that, despite LU's spin that closing ticket offices would make staff "more visible", passengers consistently have difficulty finding members of staff to assist them on stations.

Here at Tubeworker, we think the problem is clear: there aren't enough staff. The solution is to reverse job cuts.

LU has other ideas. It insists the problem is one of "visibility", and to ameliorate this it is trialling the use of red tabards (emblazoned with "here to help") at certain locations.

Help Me If You Can Tubeworker Thu, 08/31/2017 - 16:01

Management have a cunning plan to help them avoid the consequences of de-staffing stations: linking help points to other stations so it seemingly doesn't matter if there is no-one on a station to help.

They decided that they would trial this at a few stations, but unfortunately 'forgot' to consult with our unions before sending out an email to staff telling them the trial was about to start. Rumbled by eagle-eyed union activists, management have had to insert their tail between their legs and put the trial on hold indefinitely. Guilty as charged.

No Witness Available? Tubeworker Fri, 08/25/2017 - 15:40

A member of station staff has been given a suspended dismissal by LU - a "gross misconduct" charge, the highest disciplinary sanction short of actually being sacked - for conducting cash-handling work without getting a witness... because they were lone working, and there was no witness available.

Don't help LU paper over cracks Tubeworker Thu, 08/24/2017 - 12:16

In a last minute hurry to get enough staff to assist with Notting Hill Carnival, LUL sent some SRT staff to Notting Hill Gate station to be familiarised. The station had no supervisor available to walk them round the station so the SRT staff were told to come back another time.

Good! CSAs familiarising their colleagues has become a common short cut, but that's not how it should be done. Why should we take short cuts and bend the rules to help disguise how short staffed LUL is?

We need to highlight short staffing at every opportunity.

'Appy Now?

Submitted by Tubeworker on Sat, 05/27/2017 - 17:06

LU is on something of an app binge at the moment, rolling out new apps for rostering and coverage, and signing contractors onto stations.

There have been many hiccups, and the launch of the "Rostering and Coverage Tool" (RCT) app has been put back twice.

An app that makes it easier for staff to swap shifts and annual leave allocations would be very welcome. One that appears to have the ability to monitor and police staff movement, as this app appears to, less so.

Staff Presence

Submitted by Tubeworker on Sat, 05/27/2017 - 16:58

In the wake of the horrific terrorist attack in Manchester, station staff have been asked to wear our hi-vis vests permanently while on duty. LU says this is to "reassure" passengers about "staff presence".

Might it not be more reassuring to actually address the issue of how many staff there are, rather than merely changing our outfits to make us more visible?

Wot No Minimum Numbers?

Submitted by Tubeworker on Mon, 03/27/2017 - 10:12

Last month, King's Cross station stayed open with just one CSS and two CSAs on the station - not just below but way below minimum numbers - but management have decided that it was not that much of a problem.

When the last H&C trains were running late on 22 February, dead-late staff booked off and the station fell below the minimum numbers of 1 CSM + 10 others, it should have closed. Instead, King's Cross stayed open with just one CSM, one CSS and two CSAs - and then the CSM left the station to get rid of an intoxicated passenger who had abused a member of staff.

Deal With It?

Submitted by Tubeworker on Thu, 03/02/2017 - 14:38

Word reaches Tubeworker HQ of an incident at Snaresbrook recently.

A driver pulling in on the eastbound noticed a gentleman on a walking stick fall over. With no station staff available to assist, the driver was told by the controller that the affected individual would have to deal with things on his own!

This is the same station where a stabbing occurred recently, and it was during the evening peak. Maybe if someone has a heart attack, LU bosses will say they should deal with it on their own too.

Wot No Control Staff

Submitted by Tubeworker on Thu, 02/23/2017 - 08:50

A new manager comes in, wants to make a name for himself, clamps down on overtime, interferes with established ways of ensuring coverage, and guess what happens?

Yup. Not enough control staff to run the subsurface and Piccadilly lines last night. No problems for our intrepid new guvnor: the control room equipment can run itself! No, it can't. Still no problem: the staff can work through their meal reliefs. Er, no they can't.

Result: job up wall.