Mercadona and trade unions sign new collective agreement

Mercadona and the trade unions sign a new, more egalitarian and social company collective agreement

11 december 2018
  • Mercadona guarantees a minimum basic salary of €1,300 month/gross in addition to the supplements forming part of the company’s Remuneration Policy in the form of annual increases of 11% up to band 5.
  • The Company Collective Agreement and the Quality Plan will enter into force on 1 January 2019 and shall have a validity of five years, up to 2023.
  • It guarantees an improvement in purchasing power, with a progressive increase of the basic salary linked to the CPI, and introduces improvements to the night shift and cold bonuses.
  • It reinforces the worklife balance and includes the creation of a Joint Committee which will provide the company with greater flexibility and efficiency when launching new proposals in these areas.

Mercadona has signed the new Company Collective Agreement and Equality Plan with the representatives of the Unión General de Trabajadores (UGT) and Comisiones Obreras (CCOO) trade unions. Both enter into force on 1 January 2019 and shall have a duration of five years.

This new more egalitarian and social employment framework reinforces Mercadona’s commitment to stable and quality employment while improving employment conditions and at the same time consolidating its commitment to improving the purchasing power of the workforce with a minimum basic salary of €1300 a month/gross, no counting the supplements forming part of the company’s Remuneration Policy in the form of annual increases of 11% up to band 5, and a progressive raise in the basic salary linked to the CPI, in addition to introducing improvements in the bonuses for working the night shift and in cold conditions.

Strong social commitment: better worklife balance and employment stability

In keeping with Mercadona’s desire to be at the forefront and a pioneer in social aspects, the new Company Collective Agreement includes important measures of a social nature and reinforces Mercadona’s commitments to creating a worklife balance. The new measures include the extension of paternity leave to 7 weeks, compared to the five weeks currently established by law, the payment of the full salary when on medical leave due to temporary disability for up to 18 months. Likewise, it introduces the extension of unpaid leave of absence granted to look after children until the youngest reaches the age of 12. Furthermore, those that have a child under the age of 12 who are currently working reduced hours, when the maximum legal age is reached they will be able to request a change to a part-time contract until the child reaches the age of 15 and then return under a full-time contract, if this is what they wish. Likewise, the agreement also provides the possibility to request a leave of absence of up to 3 years with their position guaranteed in the case of gender-based violence, as well as other specific rights in these cases.

Furthermore,the new framework establishes a maximum of two ten-hour days a week, and includes the refund of the “pool hours” on full days when there are 12 hours or more, the implementation of a signing system will be established, and it also establishes that working days below five hours cannot not be split. For workers in the logistics department, it also details a minimum of seven free weekends a year and an annual calendar detailing their working timetable.

Equality Plan: “Same responsibility, same salary”

Mercadona has also signed the Equality Plan with the trade union representatives which consolidates its line of action with regard to equal opportunities, building on the achievements obtained in the previous plan, such that of 2017 during which 47% of managerial promotions went to women, or the fact that the equality is an undeniable value within the Company’s Model, which has applied the principle of “same responsibility, same salary” since 1997 to all aspects of the business. 

Since 1993, the year in which Mercadona began the implementation of its Total Quality Model, the company has not only reinforced the practice of equality between men and women in accessing employment, training and internal promotion, but also within the scope of the worklife balance. As demonstrated by the Equality Commission created for this purpose during the validity of the previous Plan.

Joint Committee to provide greater flexibility and efficiency

The trade union organisations and Mercadona have also agreed to the creation of a Joint Committee with representatives of all the signatories to provide greater flexibility and efficiency to the company when introducing new improvements relating to working timetables and their distribution. To do so, it will be informed of any new projects that Mercadona wishes to implements, which will allow the Committee to previously transmit recommendations to the company relating to the professional classification, working timetable or its distribution.

Ana Micó Maestre, Head of the FeSMC-UGT State Trade Union, emphasised that the signing of this Agreement “would fulfil many of the historic concessions obtained by the people working in Mercadona and the Unión General de Trabajadores Trade Union. Real and effective salary increases for the entire workforce in line with the CPI without compensation or absorption, improvements in the worklife balance policies, in the paid and unpaid leave, improvements in logistics, etc., have been progressively adding value during the negotiation of this Agreement. Other aspects of the new Collective Agreement should also be valued in the same manner, which will make it possible to progressively put into practice other improvements related to the working timetable and its distribution, thereby allowing workers to be able to enjoy a distribution of their working day which optimises the working time and rest time through the creation of a Committee. A Committee which we will form an active part of and where the concessions and concerns regarding issues such as the distribution of the working day will be studied. The colleagues who have so impeccably represented the FeSMC-UGT Trade Union during this negotiation in an exercise of responsibility and coherence, have decided to lend their support the new text, being aware that the agreements are a whole and should be valued as such. They are also fully committed to safeguarding its fulfilment so as to ensure that those persons working Mercadona are able to enjoy employment and social conditions that are in constant improvement”.

In addition, Jose María Martínez, Secretary General of the Federation of Services of the CCOO trade union, considers this agreement to be “a tool to address the current challenges occurring in the trade sector, and which are already having an evident effect at Mercadona, given that it will allow trade unions to form part of the new projects that they wish to implement with regard to their impact on working conditions. A controlled analysis of the working timetable and professional classification shall be established under the auspices of this collective agreement, indicating the importance of the introduction of improvements in social and salary aspects, the latter being one of the most important in the history of this agreement given that it guarantees real increases for the whole Mercadona workforce”.

According to Jesús Yelo, Director of the Trade Relations Department at Mercadona, “we are convinced that with this agreement, which has a validity of five years, we will continue to form the basis of a socially responsible employment model. The workers are the reason for the success and growth of the company. Offering more social and more egalitarian measures will without doubt ensure that the people that form Mercadona are satisfied and 100% committed to ensuring sustainable growth and to sharing it with the five components of the company: The Boss, (customer) The Worker, The Supplier, Society, and Capital.

Mercadona and trade unions sign new collective agreement

Header image: Miguel Ángel Cilleros, Secretary General of the Federation for Services, Mobility and Consumption of the UGT, José María Martínez, Secretary General of the Federation for Services of the CCOO, Daniel Blasco, Managing Director of Recursos Humanos, and Héctor Hernández, Managing Director of Legal, Organisation and Mercadona’s Marina de Empresas (an entrepreneurship hub), with other representatives from trade unions and the company at the Jarro Co-innovation Centre en Paterna, Valencia.