GS Salary Survey

The issue of the General Service salary survey has remained on the agenda of the Staff Union. We have continued to advocate a review of the methodology used to carry out survey. The Staff Union participated in the ICSC working group on the matter arguing for improving the transparency and reliability of the methodology. The Staff Union reiterated its reservations on the purchase of external data because there are concerns on their ability to accurately reflect the peculiarity of the organizations of the UN family. Staff representatives stated that staff were also concerned about the lack of control and of transparency that may be associated with the purchase of data from external sources.

The Staff Union remains open to the identification of practical solutions but reiterates that this effort should not compromise the transparency of the process and the substantive participation of staff representatives. The Staff Union have put forward suggestions that would allow a certain degree of flexibility in the implementation of the survey to overcome some of the problems identified (lack of participation of the employers) while at the same time maintaining the elements that would guarantee adherence to the Flemming Principle.

FLEMMING PRINCIPLE - Basis used for the determination of conditions of service of the General Service and other locally recruited categories of staff. Under the application of the Flemming principle, these conditions of employment are based on best prevailing local conditions.

End-of-service allowance

In view of a change in the Austrian law, the International Atomic Energy Agency took the lead in developing the new policy in order to bring the conditions of service of General Service staff in Vienna in line with the principle of best prevailing local conditions of service, commonly referred to as the Flemming principle. The new end-of-service allowance (EOSA) is payable as a lump sum at the end of service at the rate of 2 per cent of the final monthly gross salary less staff assessment (plus language allowance and non-resident's allowance, if applicable) multiplied by the total number of months of completed service starting with the second month of service. The allowance is payable irrespective of the reason of separation, i.e. including resignation.

The new policy on EOSA was endorsed by the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), the Staff Council of the United Nations Staff Union at Vienna and the Human Resources Policy Service at the Office of Human Resources Management, approved by the Joint Advisory Committee and promulgated by the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna and Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

The new policy entered into force on 1 August 2012 and is applicable to all General Service staff who entered on duty on 1 August 2012 or later.

General Service staff members who entered on duty before 1 August 2012 will have two options:

  1. To remain under the old EOSA system;
  2. To switch from the old system to the new one by freezing the entitlement under the old system at a certain agreed date (the decision has to be made by 31 December 2013 at the latest) and switching to the new system. The actual date of switching could be during the five-year period 1 August 2012 - 31 July 2017. The entitlement under the old system will be governed by the old provisions, while the entitlement under the new system will be governed by the new provisions.

Staff who do not notify the Human Resources Management Service (HRMS) by 31 July 2013 will be automatically considered to have opted to remain under the old EOSA scheme.

Social Security Agreement

After several years of complaints by the Staff Union, UNOV has signed the social security agreement with the Austrian Government. The agreement will enable staff who had previously worked in the Austrian labour market to have their years of work in the UN accounted for in relation to the calculation of the basic pension rights.

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