KLM’s labour contract proposal: the key facts


Over the past weeks, reports of the FNV union’s protests at Schiphol have been extensively covered in internal and external media. The aim of the protests is to ensure that KLM agrees to all of the FNV union’s demands. In its communiques, the FNV compared KLM’s proposal to “crumbs” and “a flight to the bottom”. While these comparisons and claims may be mediagenic, they are far removed and sometimes even contrary to the facts. High time for an update. What exactly has KLM proposed in negotiating a new collective labour agreement? Here’s an overview of the key facts.

KLM’s labour contract proposal aims to reward its employees for their hard work. And when it comes giving rewards, KLM agrees that one shouldn’t offer crumbs. That is why the proposal includes the following:

  • All staff will receive a one-off bonus of EUR 1,600 in 2016;
  • All staff will receive a structural salary increase of 1% effective 2018;
  • All staff have the option of converting up to 20% of their salary into a profit-sharing scheme;
  • KLM will ensure job security, with no discharge on economic/financial grounds for the duration of the CLA, despite the on-going reorganisation;
  • KLM is prepared to offer fixed contracts to 165 temps;
  • KLM will adhere to national agreements in favour of unemployment insurance (WW) coverage for a three-year period.

On top of that, it is important to bear the following in mind:

  • Despite the economic/financial headwind, no KLM employees have been compulsorily discharged. The reduction in FTEs over the past year was achieved through natural attrition;
  • The labour costs of fellow handling companies are up to 30% lower than KLM’s;
  • Work pressure if up to 20% higher at fellow handling companies.

KLM remains convinced that its proposal contains a great package of agreements, which will contribute to ensuring a brighter and better future for our organization.

While the FNV union has repeatedly presented ultimatums, KLM has continued to pursue dialogue in the on-going negotiations. The other four unions have presented KLM’s CLA proposal to their members and see no reason for protest action.