Security guards at a company specialising in providing collection and delivery services for cash and valuables across the city have called off their industrial action after management partially accepted their demands. About 100 security staff at Guardforce - about a third of the total - started a strike and staged a protest outside the firm's headquarters in Hung Hom yesterday afternoon after management refused to offer them a pay rise. 'The management urged us to have a pay freeze last year, saying we should get through the difficult period of the financial tsunami with the company together. They promised us at that time that the company would share with workers the fruits of success later,' Guardforce Staff General Union spokesman Yeung Chung-hon said. 'With our hard work, the company's business has obviously progressed. While our workload has increased, the company has said nothing about its earlier promise of a pay rise,' Yeung said, adding that increasing prices for transport, rent and food were eating up workers' salaries. The union demanded an across-the-board 5 per cent pay rise and the resumption of an automatic pay increase of HK$75 a month for each year's service. Yeung said they tried to talk to management in February but the company offered no reply so the union was forced to take industrial action. Four hours after the strike began, the two sides reached an initial agreement. 'Instead of offering a 5 per cent salary increase, the company promised to offer a one-off bonus and resume the automatic salary increment,' Yeung said, adding that the firm did not say how much the bonus would be or when it would be paid. 'They said they needed some time to work out the details and would come back to us next week. We see that they are very sincere and we want to settle the matter for good,' he said. Guardforce, which offers a wide range of security-related services, said its business was not affected by the protest. A spokeswoman said the company understood the workers' situation and was happy to listen to their views. Labour Department officials said they were aware of the dispute and would try to mediate.