Staff get a voice on company issues

Restaurant chain Pizza Express has launched an employee forum as part of a
programme to improve staff consultation.

The move pre-empts national-level works councils regulations, which are
likely to be proposed at European level under the French presidency later this
year.

Staff at the firm’s 250 restaurants are to elect a representative to discuss
issues at area, regional and national levels.

The company admitted inadequate consultation with staff has caused problems
in the past. "Certain issues with a direct impact on staff could have
benefited from better communication," said forum coordinator Steve
Perkins.

"The catering industry is notorious for having a high turnover of
employees, and although ours is relatively low, at about 26 per cent, this is
an image we wish to distance ourselves from."

The company hit the headlines last year for refusing to increase pay for
waiting staff in line with the National Minimum Wage. It argued that employees
receive more than the £3.60 limit because they keep their own tips.

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