Blog: This kind of sustained growth sets us apart

Earlier this year, we set ourselves a target – to keep on growing our union. We’re not resting on our laurels, we owe it to every UNISON member and every potential UNISON member to keep on growing and building our collective strength.

Over the past month, activists and staff alike have been working on our second growth campaign – Go For Growth – and once again we’ve shown that when we work together, we can achieve great things.

We recruited 15,268 new joiners in May – up 17% on May 2018. And more importantly, UNISON already has almost 6000 more members today than we did at the start of the year – we’re on track to grow in 2019 as we did in 2018.

Despite two bank holidays and a school half term, May showed that we can raise our recruitment by making the union visible – with online, TV and newspaper advertising – but most importantly of all, by getting out into workplaces and talking to our current members and recruiting new ones.

The breadth and scope of branch activity has been great to see – with everything from recruit-a-friend incentives and prize draws to organising and recruitment events. We’ll now be examining all of that work, and making sure what we’ve learned drives the work we do in future. We’ll be talking with regions to set regular co-ordinated Go for Growth campaign dates, and there is now a work programme looking in detail at how we can improve retention.

At a time when trade unions across the world are struggling to retain members, this kind of sustained growth sets us apart – and is a testament to our union’s strength. Together, we have so much to be proud of – and as our union grows, those successes will only multiply.