Betty Diana VARGYAS
Agents in Delegations
Contract Agents were recruited in DEL back in 2005 – 2006 (mostly former
ALATs and several Individual Experts). The start was already very shaky as a
large swathe of staff with more than 5 years’ experience were placed in the
lowest grade of FG IV 14. Those with over a decade were placed at only grade
13. Many staff missed out on Grade 16 by a question of months on grounds
that not all experience was considered “relevant” by HQ!
JUMP to the NEW GIPS OCTOBER 2017:
Now, you can enter at Grade 16 with 17 years of experience and ALL
professional experience/qualifications is taken into consideration. The 2005
restrictive grading was partly mitigated by the overall working conditions
that were considerably better under the former Annex X. Fast forward to
January 2014 and the situations deteriorated rapidly with powerful cuts
to Annex X provisions and no social dialogue, no impact study.
CAs are obliged to fight constantly to
reinstate their initial contractual provisions where there was a more
generous reimbursement of exceptional educational expenses, 42 annual leave
days ( currently 24 INADEQUATE ), an annual travel allowance based on
business not economy, the list seems endless……
Choosing to work in a Delegation is
life-changing. Staff should be accompanied by adequate provisions, not
There were high
expectation for the long-awaited Team Leader positions in Delegations.
Social Dialogue meetings were protracted and there was much emphasis on the
need to ensure that this new function would in fact serve as an incentive to
CA staff in Delegations. Unsurprisingly, CA staff are not scrambling over
each other to apply for TL positions. There is no guaranteed
reclassification despite the increase in responsibility and the need to
manage a team locally. There seems to be little incentive for the more
experienced CAs to apply for these posts which are often in hardship
countries and places where HQ has difficulty in finding officials during the
CAs now have access to Internal
Competitions but with huge limitations and a management that seems
hell-bent on making
the process as difficult as possible. USHU
demands the same pre-selection procedure for ALL internal competitions. We
believe the talent screener is vital to evaluate all the skills of CAs and
ensure the best candidates succeed.
Issues related to Team Leaders, Internal
Competitions, slow reclassificaiton are symptomatic of the continued
piecemeal approach to Human Talent Management. In-service staff who have
performed well and undergone numerous evaluations must be provided with a
true career path and not simply expected to shut up and get on with the job.
believes that the overall policy of education allowances needs a
comprehensive overhaul to ensure that the EU comes up to speed and ensures
that all staff in Delegations may obtain a quality education for their
children whilst serving in Third Countries.
As it stands everyone is treated “equally”
but USHU considers this a very unfair approach for staff with several
children of school age, staff with lower salaries, single parents and
families with only one income generator.
The concept of "personal contribution"
needs to be rethought and adapted to the realities of Delegations. In
over half of EU Member State countries, compulsory starts at the age of 5
whilst initial education, sometimes also compulsory by law, starts as early
If we want to maintain the attractiveness of
posts in Delegations, we need to ring-fence quality education for our
EUD BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
Travel Allocations for too many staff
When CAs and Expats chose to work in Delegations
pre-2014, the annual travel allocation was based on business class for the
whole family which has been eroded over time to reflect an "IATA full
economy” class ticket. That has had a significant impact on
Recently, in July 2018 this allocation was
further cut for many on the basis of a complex system of IATA tariffs which
has made many question whether this tool is the best approach. USHU
advocates strongly for the introduction of a fairer and more transparent
system for the calculation of the annual travel allocation.
Add the substantially reduced annual leave
and increased working hours and it is clear that the work-life balance in
Delegations in under incredible strain with increased cases of sick
leave, more requests for parental leave and a pervasive perception that
Delegations are becoming less and less attractive over time whereas they are
taking on more and more functions and responsibilities in order to deliver
on EU goals for external policy!