Supply chain giant DHL is set to claim back 10 per cent of workers' wages every month after an HR blunder saw overpayments in furlough cash, employees say.
The company used "flexible furlough" during the pandemic - meaning businesses were able to bring back furloughed employees on a part-time basis and still have the government pay some of their wages.
But it admitted some employees had been overpaid during the Covid crisis - and BirminghamLive reports it was in talks with workers about recouping the cash.
One current DHL employee, who asked to remain anonymous, said he received a letter telling him he would have to pay back the money he was given while on furlough.
The worker, who is employed at the Jaguar Land Rover plant in Solihull, claimed he had been told he would have 10 per cent of his wages docked from November to next September.
Image:Darren Quinton/Birmingham Live)
He said: "This is adding insult to injury. It is a DHL HR cock up. They are taking money out of out wages."
The employee, who has been at the company for more than seven years, said he would be having a one to one meeting with a HR representative.
He asked to remain anonymous but said he lived in Birmingham and has a child. He claimed he was now worried about his bills.
"I have a car on finance," the unnamed Jaguar Land Rover worker explained. "Taking that money out is going to have a knock on effect. It's going to make people have a bed credit rating."
He went on: "They are telling us how much we owe. It's not just Solihull and it's through no fault of our own.
"People are stressed out because they are throwing this into the mix."
A letter received by DHL employees, and seen by BirminghamLive, read: "For many of our colleagues, there are a number of outstanding pay corrections to be made for which we apologise.
"Flexible furlough has proved especially challenging as it requires complex calculations for each person, each pay run."
The letter went on: "Many of our colleagues require payroll adjustments to cover the period from July 2020 to September 2021, and we are writing to you as one of the colleagues impacted in this way."
The note from People Services then explained how much a given worker had been overpaid and gave a breakdown of how the overpayment debt would be repaid.
It comes amid a potential strike involving DHL workers at Midland car giant Jaguar Land Rover.
About 2,000 DHL logistics workers, who sort and deliver components at JLR sites across the UK, are being balloted on industrial action, including the option to strike, after receiving "no pay rise" since 2018.
The Unite union claimed drivers and warehouse operatives had been "plagued" by incorrect pay slips due to the company’s use of flexible furlough, with some owed up to £800 in arrears.
This week, The Unite union warned the impact of any industrial action at JLR sites at Castle Bromwich, Halewood, Hams Hall, Midpoint Tyrefort and Solihull would be "serious and immediate".
A spokesperson for DHL Supply Chain said: "Due to the complexities of the flexible furlough scheme, we are aware that a number of our colleagues have been affected by both overpayments and underpayments.
"We have worked with our trade union partners to create a process to remedy this, which will include one-to-one discussions and, for overpayments, a maximum recovery amount per pay period to minimise the impact on those affected."Read More Read More