Dirty toilets & unhealthy breakfasts - Virgin Media staff grill execs over work gripes

Dirty toilets & unhealthy breakfasts - Virgin Media staff grill execs over work gripes

A Virgin Media Q&A session, seen by The Register, has seen senior management taken to task by their workforce on the issues that matter to them day-to-day.

The session highlighted that it’s the minutiae that matters as much as the bigger stuff. Gripes such as the cleanliness of desks and toilets, the usage of work equipment, and healthy food were all raised.

One staff member said: "Desks which are not used often are full of dust and extremely unpleasant to work from (especially for us unfortunate asthmatics) unless you spend a good 15 minutes wiping everything. Even Mike Ashley pays cleaners! With a hefty bonus to boot."

Robert Dunn, Virgin Media’s CFO, promised to resolve the situation with the Building Manager.

Another worker lamented the state of facilities at Virgin Media’s contact centres: “The toilets on-site are disgraceful, the smell, the amount of times they are cleaned... I think at least three times a week I am walking into a toilet and finding the floor soaking."

A colleague agreed, and questioned if the return on investment was worth it: “With reference to 'facilities' question above, there were some 'extensive upgrade's done in the Hook office toilets, which unfortunately seemed a bit of a waste of time, money and convenience.

"The toilet seats were upgraded to soft closers, which arguably means less slamming of toilet seats.

"But on the negative side, white acrylic panels were fitted behind the hand dryers, which look like they were made in a secondary school CDT lesson and the taps were replaced by ones that quickly became covered in limescale and looked far worse than the originals. All this took several weeks to complete. Is this the right use of investment?”

An extensive upgrade programme is currently being implemented, Dunn replied.

An employee asked that the policy for private usage of vans for network engineers to be reviewed. They wanted the work-life balance of the workforce to be considered.

"Imagine, being on call day after day tied to your house, not able to venture out, not able to watch the kids dance, play football, visit family, go shopping etc. If you are not called out it feels you have wasted the weekend/evening. The benefits would be great, we could have a life on call and be able to react whilst still enjoying family life - please can this be seriously considered?"

A final gripe was on the topic that is currently at the top of the agenda for most HR departments - health and wellbeing. A member of staff asked if healthy breakfast options will be introduced. Dunn suggested that the issue be raised locally.

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