Labor/Employee Relations Essay

945 words - 4 pages

Labor relations practices were developed over time to provide fair contractual employment between employer and employee. Organizational practices perceived to be unfair, unsafe or abusive were recognized and addressed with the formation of labor unions throughout many trade level industries such as steel, textile, railroad, education and numerous others. While unions still exist today, the percentage is quite low, with more employees today negotiating their own pay, benefits, and other conditions within the work environment (Noe, Hollenbeck, Gerhard, & Wright, 2004, 441). The following discussion evaluates labor relations impacts to organizations today, and the changes in emplo ...view middle of the document...

The NLRA boosted union growth to the point where union organizations made it a requirement to join a union before hire, or within 30 days of hire, regardless of whether or not the employee was willing. Union dues were necessary for unions to exist and although when strikes were planned, employees not wishing to participate due to financial desperation were physically threatened or harmed if they tried to get past strike boundaries.Amendments to the NLRA later provided for the growth of up to 22 right-to-work states where mandated Unions are illegal and allow employees the options of negotiating their own benefits and salaries. Today union grievance strategies are often resolved with negotiations or arbitration rather than with union strikes as the financial repercussions of strikes impact participating union members with zero income while on strike, and business organizations suffer financial losses from reduced or zero productivity. Unions continue to exist in many states to ensure that employers legally adhere to fair employment acts such as safe working environments, hourly wages, salaries, benefits, or merit increases.ChangesTechnology and global business practices today are poignant contributors to the reduction in the number of unions today. Looking back over the millennia, unions were very important when labor production was high, with numerous factories established throughout the country and automated processes were just getting off the ground or had not been established yet in many production organizations. The majority of the labor force consisted of uneducated union members fighting for fair employment practices for their health and rights. Today automated robotics and outsourcing (or off shoring) to low-cost production developing countries have replaced a large number of laborious job positions in the United States.Labor relations consist of more table negotiations than strikes, with distributive bargaining in wage increas...


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