Chapter 1 - Overview of Industrial Relations

IR Chapter 1
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  1 LESSONOverview of Industrial Relations Chapter Overview 1.1Definition 1.2Principles of industrial relations 1.3Definitions of harmonious relations 1.4Effects of harmonious relations 1.3 Types of decision making in the industrial relations system 1.4 Roles and functions of government in the industrial relations 1. !ummary Learning Objectives This lesson introduces the field of industrial relations y dra#ing learners$ attention toseveral pertinent aspects. %pon completing this lesson& students should e a le to' 1. Define the term industrial relations 2. (utline principles of industrial relations 3. Define harmonious industrial relations 4. E)plain the effects of harmonious industrial relations . Descri e types of decision making in the industrial relations system*.Ela orate on roles and functions of government in the industrial relations  Introduction This lesson focuses on the concept of industrial relations and several relevant aspects.+t comprises four main parts. The first part descri es the definition and principles of industrial relations. The second part is a out harmonious industrial relations i.e.definition and principles. Part three consists of the types of decision making in theindustrial relations system. Part four outlines the roles and functions of government in theindustrial relations. This #ill help you to ac,uire an in-depth understanding of this topic.Please note that the term industrial relations and industrial relations system is usedinterchangea ly in this lesson. Definition and principles of industrial relations Definitionany definitions have een given to the term industrial relations. +n the simplest #ords it can eunderstood as the relationship et#een emplopyees and their employers #ithin the #orkenvironment. The relationship also involves trade unions. Therefore& the relationships are et#een employers and unioni/ed as #ell as non-unionised employees.Principles of industrial relations+n alaysia the employers0employees relations in the private sector are governed y the+ndustrial Relations ct 1*5 +R. This ct esta lishes the principles on #hich the relations arefounded. The principles are the follo#ing'i.Trade %nionism This principle states that #orkmen and employers too are entitled to asic tradeunion rights such as the right to form unions& the right to 6oin unions& and the right toparticipate in the activities of unions. ii.%nion RecognitionThe principle e)plains that employee unions must e recognised y employers as alegal or official representative efore they represent employees to argain #hether individually or collectively.iii.7ollective 8argaining This principle guides ho# employee unions may negotiate #ith employers the termsand conditions of employment and #ork of #orkmen& and may conclude #ithemployers inding and enforcea le #ritten agreements incorporating the terms andconditions agreed upon.iv. Dispute Resolution This is the principle that attempts to offer the effective resolution of conflicts et#eendisputing parties. Employers& #orkmen and their unions should& if possi le& eprevented through a grievance machinery or collective argaining& and if not& esettled through conciliation or ar itration& rather than aggressive methods or industrial action i.e. strikes& lockouts etc.  Definitions and effects of haronious relations 9armonious industrial relations9armonious industrial relations refer to peaceful relationship et#een employers or management and employees. !ometimes people use the term sound industrial relations asharmonious industrial relations. The relation is considered harmonious #hen the num er of disputes and industrial actions are minimal. The relationship is also considered harmonious if  oth parties choose peaceful #ays to settle the conflict. +n addition& successful disputeresolutions at the early stage also indicates the availa ility of harmonious industrial relations.Effects of harmonious industrial relationsThe effects of harmonious industrial relations can e seen from three levels i.e. nationalcountry& industry and organisational enterprise level. 1.Effects on the country9armonious industrial relations have effects on national productivity and prosperity. +t canensure political sta ility& economic development and social #ell- eing among people n acountry.2.Effects on the industry+ndustries #ill also gain enefits from harmonious relationship. :ood industrial relationshelp in uninterrupted production y ensuring continuity of production& continuousemployment and full utili/ation of capacity. This results in ma)imum production #hich inturn keeps income flo# steady for everyone involved in production. This also results intimely arrival of goods at the market thus helping economy as a #hole. 3.Effects on the organisationThe effects of harmonious industrial relations are o viously seen at the organisationallevel i.e. employer and employees. 8y maintaining e)cellent industrial relations the#astage of machines& materials and men can e reduced. utual understanding andcooperation may avoid industrial dispute that help organisation to save cost. Peacefulindustrial relations makes employees feel appreciated& keeps employees moral high andena les them to #ork #ith sincerity and enthusiasm. !ound industrial relations reduce thenum ers of industrial disputes and industrial actions. Proper elimination of #orkers;dissatisfaction results in peaceful industrial surroundings and increased production. ! pes of decision a#ing in the industrial relations s ste :overnments& employers and employees are three players in industrial relations. These groupsmay interact differently in making decisions related to #ork life. The decisions can e made inany of three #ays i.e. 'i. %nilaterallyThe decision is made y one party in disregard for other parties i.e. the employers.People tend to associate this #ay of making decisions in the alaysian pu lic sector industrial relations.  ii. 8ilaterally The decision is made y t#o parties i.e. employers and employees. The est e)ample iscollective argaining practices.iii. Tripartite manner The decision is made y three parties i.e. employers& employees and government. r itration is a good e)ample #here decisions are made y +ndustrial 7ourtgovernment& employers and employees. Roles and functions of governent in the industrial relations i.<egislator This is the role #here the government legislates or enacts la# through the Parliament.E)amples of legislations are the Trade %nions ct 1 T% the +ndustrial Relations ct 1*5 +R and the Employment ct 1 E.ii.dministrator The government performs this role through the inistry of 9uman Resources. The coreactivity is enforcing the a ove three legislations i.e. translating #ritten la#s into actualaction and taking corrective actions #hen necessary.iii.Participant This role is performed y the inister of 9uman Resources in the 7ode of 7onduct for +ndustrial 9armony and the =ational <a our dvisory 7ouncil. The inister #ith the helpof T%7 and 7%EP7! formulates appropriate industrial relations policies and promotepeaceful industrial relations policies.iv.Employer The federal government plays this role as the largest employer in the pu lic sector.People are hired to fill vacant positions availa le in this sector. !alaries and enefits areprovided to compensate them. POINT TO PONDER  Every method in making decisions has its own merits and demerits. Examine thetripartite manner of making decision in industrial relations. Suar The esta lishment of alaysian industrial relations is ased on certain principles. The ultimateaim is to achieve peaceful relationship et#een employers and employees in oth sectors. +naddition& government has specific roles pertinent to ensure sound industrial relations.
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