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Should banks force staff to work weekends?

Do you support the Finance Sector Union (FSU) in its weekend-work court battle with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA)? The FSU wants to prevent CBA from forcing staff to work at the weekend. (The Australian).

But in the current economic climate, should we still have the right to stay clear of the office on Saturday and Sunday? Shouldn’t we just be glad to have a job and work when we’re told to?

The union wants to overturn changes to CBA’s trading licence in NSW that have allowed it to introduce compulsory work during weekend trading hours. But the bank is claiming that staff were able to make a fully informed choice when their job contracts stipulated weekend work as a condition of employment.

Bankers are used to sacrificing the odd Sunday, but should they be compelled to hit their desks at the weekend? Is CBA being a bully, or are weekends no longer worth fighting for?

Comments (8)

  1. Perhaps if CBA was (more) prestigous then, yes, I would work weekends.

  2. Not wanting to sound to harsh – but most of these CBA people will be bank teller retail staff. If you’re a ‘proper’ banker then you work weekends anyway!!

  3. At a junior retail-branch level, working hours need to be clearly set out. In senior roles, weekend work is common place.

  4. Some people actually prefer to work at weekends – escape the wife/husband/kids/housework…have a nice lazy Monday off work with nobody bothering you. It’s called FLEXIBLE WORKING – heard of that? Everyone should have the option of weekend work if their job suits it .

  5. All banks should be working weekends … financial markets operate 24hrs/7days a week … deposit services and FX transactions are badly needed on weekends, same with brokerage activity … if retailers operate 7 days why not banks?

  6. For most staff esp. those with families the weekend is sacrosanct. It could be the only time when they can have a complete rest and be with their spouse and children. And staff must have a good rest if they are to serve their employers and clients well. So, banks must first of all find out if there is a demand for weekend banking. And if so what type of services the clients need. A simple questionnaire to clients will help to determine this. Then banks can then allocate staff for weekend work either on a voluntary basis and on rotation. As an incentive, perhaps banks can consider giving “weekend staff” 2 other off days during the week.

  7. There seems to be a really snobby arrogant overtone in one or two of these comments i.e if you are a proper banker you work at weekends, these come from the idiots who have a life goal to be a spreadsheet jockey for 80 hours a week so they can say they work for a Wall St name. If you commit to an IB you do the hours in the hope you get a big bonus this year and and an even bigger one next year, picking up that kind of benefit is the reward for those hours put in. The retail bankers which some folks take such a dim view of won’t get any kind of bonus and get dicked around by big firms who really only seem committed to shareholders and don’t give a damn about the employees. Sacrificing your weekends when you are paid 60k with no bonus is not reasonable and should be fought against. Its when there is down turn that employees need to preserve their working conditions since the employers will be inclined to do what they like due to the lack of other job opportunities available. I would love to see Ralph Norris spend a year working weekends in the Bankstown CBA for 60k PA for a 12 month period to “broaden” his experience, sort of a mini MBA you might call it.

    Richard Malone Reply
  8. Well, there is a proportion of staff that works hard (late week nights and weekends), and there is also a substantial of those who make a lot of noise that they are being underpaid and overworked. Well, the ironic is this group of people starts at 9 and finishes at 5.30pm (on the “. “), net-surfs most part of their time at work with in between coffee breaks, and talking a lot of bs!

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