Dow Jones ending service awards, says union
The IAPE 1096, which represents business journalists who work at The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s and MarketWatch.com, sent out the following to its members on Friday:
Dow Jones employees who have reached ten, twenty, thirty or forty years of service anniversary dates since July 1st and who are waiting for an invitation to pick out their Dow Jones service award are in for an unpleasant surprise.
That’s because, unbeknownst to anyone who has not contacted the People Department to inquire about their own award, Dow Jones has unilaterally decided to eliminate the Dow Jones Service Award program.
IAPE representatives were informed of this news yesterday during our monthly Labor/Management Committee meeting – but only after we received questions from our own members about the awards, and passed those questions on to Company representatives.
Union reps on the committee were informed the Company decided not to publicize the elimination of the program.
Not to worry, we told them. We’ll be happy to take care of the announcement.
When we last negotiated over the terms of the Service Award program – and make no mistake, Dow Jones has an obligation to negotiate with the Union over the terms of this employee benefit – Dow Jones approached IAPE in 2015 with plans to reduce costs by eliminating the five-year award intervals. We agreed to modify the program, which resulted in employees only receiving awards after anniversaries in ten-year increments.
At that time, the Company estimated savings of approximately $100,000 per year.
A hundred thousand bucks.
Fine, we thought. Let the Company have their savings. In the post-Lex Fenwick period, Dow Jones was searching high and low for areas to cut costs. After all, Dow Jones logo redesigns don’t pay for themselves. But surely, senior management will see the value in continuing to offer tokens of appreciation to tenured employees, even if those were only offered half as often as they had been before.
IAPE is currently reviewing all options for response to this unilateral change imposed by Dow Jones management. We hate to think an Unfair Labor Practice charge would be necessary to make Company officials see the error of their ways.
In the meantime, if you’re a Dow Jones employee celebrating a double-digit service anniversary ending in zero, please accept our appreciation and congratulations. Our words aren’t worth much, but they’re apparently more than Dow Jones is willing to offer these days.