Page last updated at 19:23 GMT, Wednesday, 14 April 2010 20:23 UK

Staffordshire-based JCB creates hundreds of new jobs

JCB factory
The GMB said it was good to see former employees returning to work

JCB has begun recruiting up to 200 new workers to meet an increase in demand for products.

Almost 2,000 jobs were lost at the Rocester-based firm during the recession but an "improvement in some markets" has helped, a spokesman said.

Employees, who have not had a pay rise since January 2008, have also agreed a three-year pay deal.

A GMB union spokesman welcomed the news after members had endured such a "torrid time" over the past two years.

"It is also pleasant to see some of our former employees back working for the company as part of an ongoing recruitment process," he added.

Shop floor workers voted to accept a 3% pay increase from July and for subsequent pay reviews on 1 January 2011, 2012 and 2013 to be linked to the previous November's rate of inflation, JCB said.

This is the longest pay deal ever to be agreed at JCB and demonstrates a responsible approach by everyone concerned
Alan Blake, CEO at JCB

The company has also begun re-introducing overtime for shop floor employees.

JCB's chief executive officer, Alan Blake, said: "We are pleased to return to the position of being able to offer pay rises to our workforce after a sustained period of uncertainty in world markets and are delighted that GMB members have voted in favour of the JCB pay proposal.

"This is the longest pay deal ever to be agreed at JCB and demonstrates a responsible approach by everyone concerned.

"There has been a slight improvement in some markets which has led to some increased demand for JCB's products and while we can't say at the moment if this situation will be sustained, we are pleased to be offering overtime and recruiting again."

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