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A Study of the Best Labor Practices of Selected Tourism Establishments in the Philippines

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The study primarily aims to provide information on how selected companies from the tourism-oriented sector handle labor issues. Literature are provided to determine what are the best practices that are within minimum labor standard laws, and those practices which are over and above the minimum labor standard laws. By way of recommendation, legislators and government agencies such as the Department of Tourism and Department of Labor and Employment should play an active role in providing assistance for tourism establishments in terms of training, information dissemination and education on labor laws and standards required for excellent service to customers. There is also a need for tourism-oriented establishments to maintain standards in order to contribute to its growing industry, hence it is preferable for administrators of colleges and universities to look into these best labor practices for reflection, perusal and review in terms of utilizing the information for developing quality educational programs to prepare its future graduates (especially for graduates of BS Hotel and Restaurant Management and BS Tourism and Tourism Management) on their entry level in the tourism industry.
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    International Journal of Research in Management, Economics & Commerce Website: www.indusedu.org (ISSN 2250-057X, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 4, Issue 3, March 2014) 19 A STUDY OF THE BEST LABOR PRACTICES OF SELECTED TOURISM ESTABLISHMENTS IN THE PHILIPPINES Christine Carpio-Aldeguer Danny Cabulay Adulfo Arevalo ABSTRACT The study primarily aims to provide information on how selected companies from the tourism-oriented sector handle labor issues.  Literature are provided to determine what are the best practices that are within minimum labor standard laws, and those practices which are over and above the minimum labor standard laws.  By way of recommendation, legislators and government agencies such as the  Department of Tourism and Department of Labor and Employment should play an active role in providing assistance for tourism establishments in terms of training, information dissemination and education on labor laws and standards required for excellent service to customers.There is also a need for tourism-oriented establishments to maintain standards in order to contribute to its growing industry, hence it is preferable for administrators of colleges and universities to look into these best labor practices for reflection, perusal and review in terms of utilizing the information for developing quality educational programs to prepare its future graduates (especially for graduates of BS  Hotel and Restaurant Management and BS Tourism and Tourism Management) on their entry level in the tourism industry. Keywords: tourism, best practices, labor, hotel, hospitality industry    International Journal of Research in Management, Economics & Commerce Website: www.indusedu.org (ISSN 2250-057X, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 4, Issue 3, March 2014) 20 INTRODUCTION The philosophy that human resources are a company’s most valuable asset holds true in a service-oriented industry like tourism. This industry that is both labor intensive and capital intensive creates an interdependent relationship between management and labor. It is interesting to find out what kind of labor issues arise from these sectors and how management resolves them. The study primarily aims to provide information on how selected companies from the tourism-oriented sector handle labor issues This study also aims to provide information on the different remedies and preventive measures which are being undertaken by the selected establishments from the tourism-oriented sector to minimize labor-related deterrents to good work performance. Specifically, it seeks to answer the following questions: 1. What are the different causes of labor disputes in the various establishments in the tourism-oriented sectors? 1.1 hotel 1.2 restaurant 1.3 transport service 1.4 travel trade 1.5 tourist site 2. What are the critical factors that give rise to such labor disputes? 3.1. hotel 3.2. restaurant 3.3. transport service 3.4. travel trade 3.5. tourist site 3. What are the methods/measures employed by management to resolve labor disputes in their respective companies? 4. What are the schemes of the various tourism-oriented establishments in handling labor cases? 5. What are the best practices in managing labor disputes in their respective companies?    International Journal of Research in Management, Economics & Commerce Website: www.indusedu.org (ISSN 2250-057X, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 4, Issue 3, March 2014) 21 6. What is the impact of applying the practices in managing labor disputes in their respective companies as perceived by the respondents in terms of: 6.1 Productivity 6.2 Cost 6.3 Employee morale The study will cover human resource managers and other human resources personnel handling managerial or supervisory positions. Only companies/agencies in the five sectors namely: hotel, restaurant, transport service, travel trade and tourist sites are considered in the study. THEORETICAL/CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK A. Review of Related Laws  A) The 1987 Constitution of the Philippines The Philippine Constitution (1987) provides an explicit provision for labor. Labor, whether local or overseas, organized or not organized, shall be given constitutional protection. The State shall promote shared responsibility between workers and employers. Thus, the workers shall also participate in policy and decision-making processes affecting their rights and benefits as may be provided by law. The recognition by the State of the right of labor to its just share in the fruits of  production and the right of enterprises to reasonable returns on investments as well as to expansion and growth may be considered a sequel to the rule that the principle of shared responsibility between workers and employers must be promoted by the State. The words “just share in the fruits of production” should not cover only basic salaries and other employment benefits but may also cover profit-sharing. (Nolledo, 1990). The State also protects the rights of the working women by assuring them safe and healthful conditions of work and opportunities to maximize their full potential in the service of the nation.  B)  Benefits, Privileges, Policies Affecting Employees   Minimum Wage By virtue of the Wage Rationalization Act of 1989 (Phil.) , the determination of minimum wage rates are now within the function of the Regional Tripartite and Productivity Board. “Minimum wages” underlies the effort of the State to promote    International Journal of Research in Management, Economics & Commerce Website: www.indusedu.org (ISSN 2250-057X, ISO 9001:2008 Certified Journal, Volume 4, Issue 3, March 2014) 22  productivity-improvement and gain-sharing measures to ensure a decent standard of living for the workers and their families; to affirm labor as a primary social economic force. [Employers Confederation of the Philippines vs. National Wages and Productivity Commission et al.,   (1991)] Collective Bargaining This means conferring promptly and in good faith for negotiating agreements with respect to wages, hours of work, etc. and entering into written contracts, (called Collective Bargaining Agreement or CBA) adjustment of grievances, etc. The provisions commonly found in collective bargaining agreements are: 1) Enumeration or reservation of management rights; 2) Union recognition and security; 3) Wage and fringe benefits and their administration; 4) Physical working conditions; 5) Selected personnel management and plant operation practices; 6) Grievance and arbitration; 7) Duration of contract . ( Azucena, 2001)    Labor Management Council Under Article 255 of the Labor Code of the Philippines (1974), it reserves the right of an individual employee or group of employees (unionized or non-unionized) to present grievances to their employer at any time, with or without collective bargaining, with or without exclusive bargaining representatives. The Department of Labor and Employment promotes the formation of Labor Management Councils (LMC) in organized and unorganized establishments. (Omnibus Rules to Implement the Labor Code of the Philippines, 1989). An LMC, either as council or committee, can serve as a forum where management and employees may air their concerns, short of collective  bargaining. It is largely a communication mechanism which includes prevention or resolution of disputes. Harnessed to the fullest and given the sincerity, confidence and maturity of both sides, LMC can effectively secure industrial peace, provided it maintains its integrity. In fact, an LMC can be so effective it can make a labor union unnecessary. Labor Management Councils require that employee representatives should  be elected by the employees, not hand-picked by management.  Maternity and Paternity Leaves Maternity leave benefits are covered under the Social Security Act of 1997 (Phil.). Under said law, a female member (need not be married) who has paid at least three (3) monthly contributions in the 12-month period immediately preceding the semester of her
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