Prospect has been vocal within Openreach for some time on this issue, and we have raised a number of concerns about the time constraints and pressures placed on our members. The announcements today are a significant step forward, but this will be an on-going process.
Prospect has been involved in a series of discussions with the business about the difficulties our members face in this role, and we very much welcome the changes announced today, particularly the support to take administrative and analyst tasks away from the OM. We also welcome Openreach's commitment to maintain the dialogue with us, review the impact going forward and support OMs in ensuring the new way of working sticks. Partly this means allowing our members the time for essential tasks and (face to face) team meetings, and we're pleased to see this as a central part of today's announcements. Some of the changes require a shift in how colleagues will work. So this is going to take time to bed-in, but we can see that if properly utilised this may well provide engineers with an alternative route for much of their questions that might otherwise come to OMs, and this will help free up time. Please flag concerns into the National Office - Openreach have clearly indicated they want to work in partnership with Prospect to help get this right.
The OM role has been through many changes over the years, and technology and other factors will no doubt bring about further change in the future. What remains is the hard work and commitment our members display, and we're keen to ensure this is recognised and acknowledged. Today's announcement is a significant step in the right direction.
The Prospect Openreach IRC will continue talking to Openreach about the detail and roll-out of these proposals, as always we welcome feedback from all our members. Contact details below.
You can contact Prospect via the Helpdesk on 020 8971 6060 or via firstname.lastname@example.org