United Parcel Service (UPS) is prepared to return to the negotiations table with Teamsters-represented U.S. workers. The company said on Wednesday that it had made an improved offer in hopes of preventing the previously-announced strike.
Teamsters represent around 340,000 UPS workers, which make up more than half of the company’s employees. The two sides have been engaged in talks for quite some time now and seemed to have been closing on an agreement before the negotiations broke down in July.
Teamsters said that it is willing to go on a strike when the current contract expires on August 1, which would have devastating consequences for the company. It is estimated that the company could take a $7 billion hit if the strike was to last even 10 days.
One of the major reasons why there has still been no agreement is the hourly wage for experienced part-time workers. They are earning a minimum of $16.20 an hour, which is often the same or less than the new hires are taking home.
The two sides previously agreed on several key issues, including having air conditioning installed in more trucks and scraping the two-tier wage system. Now it seems that UPS is also willing to come closer to the unresolved issues as the date of the strike approaches.
“We are pleased to be back at the negotiating table next week to resolve the few remaining open issues, “said UPS in a statement. “We are prepared to increase our industry-leading pay and benefits, but need to work quickly to finalize a fair deal that provides certainty for our customers, our employees and businesses across the country. “