Royal Mail reaches in-principle agreement with union over pay, operational changes

Dec 18 (Reuters) - Royal Mail Plc said on Friday it has reached an in-principle agreement with its largest labour union, the Communication Workers Union (CWU), over company strategy, operational change and pay.

The breakthrough comes after a long-running dispute between the company and union over direction, working conditions and workplace culture, and it lifts the threat of industrial action ahead of Christmas.

The company said in a statement here late Friday it has "reached a negotiators' agreement in principle with the Communication Workers Union covering areas including the strategy and future direction of Royal Mail, operational change, and pay".

CWU said it reached an agreement over pay, mutual benefit change and “security” for its members.

The agreement will be considered by the union’s executive before being voted on by members next week.

"The CWU Postal Executive will now meet on Monday and Tuesday. If the agreement is endorsed, we will be in a position to communicate further details to all members," the union said in a tweet here.

Rico Back, who founded and ran the company’s international parcels operation before becoming CEO, resigned in May following a year of union resistance to his 1.8 billion pound restructuring plan. (Reporting by Aakriti Bhalla in Bengaluru; Editing by Daniel Wallis)