Plywood Job Evaluation Plan BC Coast Sawmill Rate Determination Program

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Job Evaluation History

Prior to 1967 | 1967 | 1967-69 | 1970 | 1972 | 1973 | 1974 | 1994

Prior to 1967 the four B.C. Interior Local Unions, individually and collectively, have suffered numerous bad experiences with establishing acceptable category rates for their membership in the sawmilling and related section of the lumber industry, and mainly for the following reasons:

  • The large geographic area covered by the four Local Unions.
  • The diversity of operations in that geographic area, small operations versus large operations, broken-down operations versus the most modernized operations, operations affiliated to a Management Association versus "independent" operations, etc.
  • The existence of two Negotiating Arenas within the geographic area, having to deal with two different Area Management Associations:

               Local 1-405     Cranbrook  )
               Local 1-417     Kamloops   ) B.C. Southern Interior
               Local 1-423     Kelowna     )

           Local 1-425     Williams Lake     ) B.C. Northern Interior
           Local 1-424     Prince George     )

Before 1967, an adversarial climate existed between the union and the industry with respect to negotiating acceptable category rates.

1967                                                                                                     top

Delegates at the Southern Interior Wages and Contract Conference held on May 12-13th in Kelowna and passed a resolution which instructed their members on the B.C. Southern Interior Negotiating Committee, "that the employers initiate a Job evaluation program for all categories in the manufacturing section of the industry, not now included in the job evaluation program adopted for the plywood section".
As a result of meetings between the IWA BC Southern Interior Negotiating Committee and Interior Forest Labour Relations Association (IFLRA), the following Article XXIII was written into the collective agreement:

"A Joint Committee comprised of an equal number of representatives of the Union and the Interior Forest Labour Relations Association shall be established by July 1, 1968, and shall meet at least once monthly (or such other times as shall be mutually agreed upon by the Committee members) for the purpose of establishing by June 30, 1970, an evaluation program to cover all categories in the sawmilling section of the industry."

1967-69                                                                                                top

Both Negotiating Parties appointed their representative to the Joint Committee (Tony Vanderheide for the IWA and Mr. John Houston for the IFLRA) and each Negotiating Party hired their own consulting engineering firms which were Pacific Northwest Consultants for the IWA and Stevenson & Kellogg for the IFLRA.

This Committee was charged with the responsibility of developing the technical aspects of the program for subsequent adoption by their respective principals. Agreement on the administration of the program was reached in August 1969. Agreement on the Manual, the Factors in the Manual, the point value of the Degrees of the Factors in the Manual were agreed to in October 1969.

Some 83 categories in six BC Southern Interior operations were studied in order to test this Manual, etc., the formulation of certain documents was agreed on (Job Study Record, Job Specification Sheet), and the guidelines to be used by the Union and Industry Evaluation Departments were laid down.

1970                                                                                                      top

In possession of all the information gathered during the preceding three years, the IWA BC Southern Interior Negotiating Committee and Interior Forest Labour Relations Association went to the bargaining table for the purpose of establishing the required number of groups in the program, the required monetary difference (increments) between such groups, and the required administrative procedures to be put in effect in order to ensure "uniform application" of the Program. Agreement on all these matters was reached on September 28, 1970, which cleared the way for the subsequent evaluation of all applicable operations covered by the Area Master Agreement.

Interview Committees were appointed from the Local Unions and Local Management level to work in teams of two in order to establish proper Job descriptions for each category to be covered by the Program. Job descriptions were scrutinized and evaluated, after an on-site inspection of the plant by Union Evaluator Tony Vanderheide and the Industry's Evaluator Mr. John Houston. The result of these evaluations to become effective on January 1, 1972.

1972                                                                                                      top

The BC Interior Sawmill Job Evaluation Program was implemented in Local 1-405, Local 1-417 and Local 1-423 in joint meetings between the local union and local management on an area basis. The 1972 Negotiations for a Master Contract provided for: (1) The deletion of the "forced bidding clause" from Sawmill Job Evaluation; (2) The review of all previously established grading guidelines and the implementation of agreed upon results effective January 1, 1973; and (3) Improved "Red Circle Protection" for incumbents on interim rates.

1973                                                                                                      top  

In the middle of a two-year Master Contract the IWA BC Southern Interior Negotiating Committee and Interior Forest Labour Relations Association reached agreement effective July 9, 1973 on the re-weighting of the Lumber Recovery, Manual Skill, Mobile Equipment Factors in the Manual. In accordance with these changes, the Parties also reached agreement on grading guideline changes for Carrier Driver, Sawyer, Chipping Edger, Forklift Operator (Cat 950), and Charge Hands categories. Further agreement was reached on changes to the structure of Groups and related Increments.

Due to the difficulty of arriving at an acceptable rate for the categories of "OILER" and "GRINDERMAN" under the negotiated Manual, the Negotiating Committees for the Parties reached agreement on their exclusion from the Sawmill Job Evaluation Program and negotiated Industry-wide rates.

In order to be able to differentiate between rates of pay for the broad category of "TRUCK DRIVER" the Negotiating Committees for the Parties agreed to establish different grading rules for (1) Truck Driver (in-plant-clean-up) and Truck Driver (single axle highway); (2) Truck Driver (tandem axle); and (3) Truck Driver (highway trucks or tractors with trailer over 10,000 lbs. capacity).

1974                                                                                                      top

On January 7, the Negotiating Committees for the Parties reached agreement on the inclusion of five poleyards to the Sawmill Job Evaluation program with an effective date of November 1, 1973 for the resulting category rate increases. As a result of 1974 Master Contract Negotiations, the Parties agreed to change the previous 1973 Master Agreement group structure, point division per group and the increments.

Further to the results of 1974 Master Contract Negotiations, agreement was also reached on changes to the grading guidelines for Planerman #1, Planerman #2, Planer Grader, Forklift Operator, and Pole Yard Log Loader categories.

Finally, the Parties reached agreement on administrative changes in the related Contract Supplement, specifically dealing with the structure and responsibilities of the Plant Job Review Committee relating to the future preparation of Job Study Records, a responsibility which up to that time had been assigned to the Industry Job Evaluation Committee.

In northern BC, the IWA BC Northern Interior Negotiating Committee and the Negotiating Committee for North Caribou Forest Labour Relations Association (NCFLRA) reached agreement on the implementation of the BC Interior Sawmill & Poleyard Job Evaluation Plan into northern BC sawmills and related operations.

1994                                                                                                      top

The plan was further amended in 1994 to recognize the impact of automation and technological change. Both the northern and southern interior employer associations and the IWA negotiated language into their respective collective agreements that modified the existing job evaluation factors to better reflect the ever-increasing degrees of influence technological change. Changes to the plan recognized both limited and major optimization, the additional operation of machine centers by one operator, the balancing of product flow by the operator, and the operator's use of responsible judgment on enhancing recovery, grade and/or quality of product. 

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