(No.3) CURRENT RATES
If you've ever done a "conservative" calculation on estimate of what rate should be using minimal inflation since 80s... You'd find that a JIB APPROVED ELECTRICIAN rate could & should be set at £30+ per hour! But that IS an ideal that also doesn't account for firms creaming off the top & agencies continual bottom feeding leaving the remaining money to offer rates from £17 to £25ph. When it should be more.
Why have we allowed this to be the case??? Generally we've been a tad short sighted, somewhat ill-informed, greedy & had/have misplaced trust in the "current" governing bodies. The JIB,ECA & UNITE are all more than aware of this but pathetic JIB rates remain under £20ph in 2018!!! This obviously suits them & sets a substandard benchmark. Whilst they still "negotiate" minimal increases, supposedly on our behalfs yet £30+ is nearer the truth of what rate should be yet many firms currently budget forecasts at least a £30ph charge & keep everything above the current pony JIB rates whilst we fight amongst ourselves about personal preferences &/or allegiances to this or that union however exemplary their efforts are. (See EWB) In addition a sadly disorganised self employed workforce, with egomaniacs at the helm of a ship lost at sea... A totally divided & selfish trade who are predominantly wary of making ANY waves & content to accept whatever is offered & be "in work" rather than "out of work"... What persists overall is a fear of being potless/borassic which is exactly the negative motivation that allows agency's to smell the apprehension & prey on this underlying desperation & keep reaping profits somehow convincing goodfellas to undervalue their services whilst we continue to not even earn a decent wage after a 40 hour week (unless overtime is done) Again... Anxiety (born of a shithouse hourly rate) & concerns about inability to pay the mortgage, rent & bills & her indoors nagging about her holiday or new sofa can contribute. Resulting in a lack of solidarity & a no shared consensus about a ANY fixed minimum rate! Much less this so call "sparksafe" card... Hmmm? Note also a worthwhile realistic yearly rate increase for an Approved Electrician doesn't seem to have arisen. Instead many different "invented" grades/types of "electrical worker" many with aspirations beyond their station masquerading as sparks with companies turning a blind eye & utilising unskilled, semi-skilled & unqualified "competent individuals" to do more & more of electrical installation. When "actual electricians" see their earnings in last decade effectively frozen in comparison to inflation all while governing bodies spout utter tripe about how well they have done getting us another 57 (or whatever it was) pence an hour!Whoopee Effin' Doo Doo!!!???!!!
In their eyes the firms generally DON'T believe the industry is f#¥€ed. In fact it's thriving (do some minimal research into financial incentives/bonuses paid & you'll find how well THEY are doing) More often than not justifying OUR pay as simply reflecting the ebb & flow of the markets. To my mind supply & demand SHOULD NOT override OUR fundamental need to be earning a fair wages money - for a fair days work. Sadly, if this trend continues... More & more of us will see our trade not only deskilled but eventually being "AN ELECTRICIAN" will be meaningless when a labourer can throw in metalwork at £15 ph, doing 10/12 hour days & 7 days a week. Think about it... Say you're a CEO, do you really think you'd be concerned about the skill/knowledge of labour &/or quality of works done??? When you are reaping increased sizeable profits by having no marks & Bengals (rhyming slang for chancer) doing the majority of the commercial install! NO! Is the truth!
To sum up, maybe just maybe more of US can become more proactive - rather than the usual suspects & let us all regain the pride in (what was) the best trade in construction and to continue pushing for rightful earnings in line with the times & NOT a job title that stands for JackShit other than electrical & NON-electrical labour to be abused & mindraped to make more & more money for company directors, shareholder's, managers & agency reps. ELECTRICIANS STRUGGLING TO MAKE ENDS MEET!?!?! Shouldn't be a thing but it is!!! C'mon fellas stand up & be counted & let us THE time served hard faced top bananas see our trade returned to the top echelons & paid accordingly! Thanks for listening MNE