Executive Committee of the Industrial Union approves result of negotiations in the technology industry – agreement also reached in car sector

Today, 7 January 2022, the Executive Committee of the Industrial Union (votes 20–8) approved the result of negotiations for a new collective agreement in the technology industry. The negotiating result was reached on 4 January 2022 with the assistance of the National Conciliator following the strike warning issued a few days earlier by the Industrial Union to Technology Industry Employers of Finland and affecting key enterprises in the sector. Now that a collective agreement has been achieved, the Industrial Union has cancelled all industrial action announced in the technology industry sector.

The settlement agreed upon increases wages by 2.0 per cent in 2022. There is a general wage increase of 1.5 and a locally agreed component of 0.5 per cent. Riku Aalto, President of the Industrial Union, is satisfied with the settlement reached.

– The general increase for all employees is very significant and the extra local component is structured so that it ensures fair treatment for employees with a backstop risk for employers, Aalto says.

– The settlement is historic in two ways. Firstly, employees got bigger pay increases than senior clerical employees. Secondly, the settlement has been made with the new employers’ federation, Technology Industry Employers of Finland, Aalto continues.

Technology Industry Employers of Finland is the new employers’ federation that started up in August 2021 a few months after Technology Industries of Finland announced it was ending its labour market involvement. The representativeness of the member companies of Technology Industry Employers of Finland has grown quickly, which ensures strong general applicability of new the agreement in the technology industry sector. According to the Industrial Union’s Aalto, maintaining general applicability indicates that companies are committed to the current agreement model.

– In this agreement round there were more blockages to unlock than before. Many of these blockages opened up when the companies chose general applicability as their starting point for industry negotiations. It appears that our agreement system enjoys a lot more support among companies than is generally supposed, Aalto comments.

The new collective agreement in the technology industry is in force until 30 November 2023, but it can be terminated by 30 November 2022 if the parties do not reach agreement on a pay settlement for 2023 before then. So the agreement is for 1 + 1 years. Around 90,000 industrial employees are covered by the agreement.

As well as the collective agreement in the technology industry, the Executive Committee of the Industrial Union also approved collective agreements for ore mines as well as the car sector and engineering. In terms of coverage, the car sector agreement is the Industrial Union’s second largest agreement. It covers around 20,000 employees.

The Industrial Union negotiates sectoral agreements for all its sectors except the mechanical forest industry, where agreements are negotiated separately with each company in the sector. Up to now, the individual company agreements in the forest industry and the sectoral agreements in other agreement sectors have on average resulted in equivalent pay rises.

– The individual company settlements have not increased or decreased the level of pay rises relative to the sectoral settlements. Employees get roughly the same increase whether the settlement is made directly with a company or with the employers’ federation. This is an important observation from this agreement round, Aalto concludes.