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Employment Relations and Trade Union Employment relationship is a relationship between an employer and an employee where employees perform certain duties and some payment received in return. This employment relationship assists workers to gain access to their rights and other benefits in employment as well as determining the level at which the parties apply their rights and obligations to each other (Rose, 2008: 70)…
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Download file to see previous pages In such instances, intervention of trade unions is vital in that it encourages procedures to be put in place so as to create necessary and balanced relationship; thus promoting mutual understanding between the parties. A win-win situation is built between the parties thereby enabling them to have mutual understanding and better progress. A trade union is comprised of employees who need to have their interests organized and represented not only in the workplace but also in the society. The union ensures proper regulation of the employment relationship through collective bargaining with the management. Here, employers and employees share powers in conducting employment relationship. The process of collective bargaining opens the room for negotiation between employers’ representatives and the union comprising of employees, in the aim of regulating employment where they reach an agreement which is, therefore, applied to employees equitably. This tool is mostly used by unions in protecting or improving their members’ interests. Therefore, involvement of collective bargaining and power sharing between the two parties has a considerable impact in that it improves the employment relationship and fosters organizational performance (Daniels, 2006: 43). The Trade Union and Labour Relations Act governs both permanent and casual workers who have a common interest in regulating their relationship with the employers. Functions of trade union are broad in terms of job regulation, power, social change, economic regulation, self fulfilment and member services. At times, some trade unions have affiliated with some representative bodies, for instance, the UK Trade Union Congress which depicts itself as the voice of all workers in Britain. It helps members to lobby the government concerning various issues, which include, union, economic and employment Unions have the mandate to challenge managerial rights by restricting employees from supplying labour to their employers through the organisation of industrial action (Stephen, 2007: 45). Unions have not only a face of monopolising labour supply to the management, but also a voice for their members. In their operation as a collective voice, they spot employees’ concerns and efficiently convey them to the employer. This enables the management to better treat the employees without having to incur transaction costs. It also impacts an individual employee by overcoming the incentive problem that would cost them by conveying their grievances to management in the absence of the union particularly when the benefit accrues to all workers, for example, public goods like safety and health. In such cases, the employees do not tackle the problems facing them; instead they let them foster and find it more convenient to quit their jobs and go in search for another one elsewhere (Rose, 2008: 38). Unions, therefore, are considered to offer a valuable service to both the management and the employees by collecting all employees’ concerns and passing them on to the employer. This, in most cases, leads to faster and better decision making by the management, which solves employees’ requirements better than in the absence of the union. Effectiveness of a union is gauged by its capability of achieving set goals in serving members through workplace representation and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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