Tuskys Supermarkets is facing a steep increase in staff costs after signing a fresh pay agreement with workers that raises their basic pay by eight per cent.
In the new pay deal the retailer’s 1,800 unionisable employees will get free accommodation or receive a housing allowance of 15 per cent of their basic salary.
Tuskys workers will also be entitled to Sh3,150 commuter monthly allowance under the new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), up from Sh2,850.
The two-year CBA backdated to March 2017 will remain in force for 24 months.
It succeeds the salary agreement signed in 2016 and backdated to March 2015 where the retailer’s employees also got an eight per cent wage rise and a similar increment in the second year.
The deal was signed on Tuesday last week between the Kenya Union of Commercial, Food and Allied Workers (Kucfaw) and Tusker Mattresses Ltd, Tuskys’ holding company.
“The latest agreement means that the highest paid employees (Cashiers, clerks and heavy duty drivers) will be paid about Sh44,000 up from Sh38,000 while the lowest paid (shelf stockers and attendants) will receive Sh29,000 up from Sh25,000,” said Kucfaw secretary-general Bonface Kavuvi.
Tuskys CEO Dan Githua declined to disclose how much the new deal will cost the retailer.
“We consider the new deal better because allowances and leave days have been increased. The union is happy to have struck a better deal this round,” said Mr Kavuvi.
The workers also secured 24 leave days every year from 23 days, paid sick leave increased to 45 days annually with pay from 40.
Employees will also be paid Sh3,700 leave travelling allowance per year. Three-month maternity leave and 14-day paternity leave remain unchanged.
Tuskys will also be required to part with Sh70,000 to cover funeral expenses in the event an employee dies.
Workers travelling on official duties will also be entitled to Sh3,530 daily allowance to cover food and accommodation.
Newly-employed cashiers (category six employees), assistant supervisor (category five) and receiving clerks and store keepers (category four) at Tuskys will earn a minimum basic monthly pay of Sh29,519, Sh22,292 and 20,259, respectively.
The deal is the third to be signed by Tuskys and its employees. Its maiden salary agreement was signed in December 2013 after Tuskys workers went on strike demanding their right to join a trade union and harmonise their pay with basic minimum wages.
The March 2013-2015 agreement gave workers a 10 per cent rise in the first year followed by 11 per cent in the second year.