You are on page 1of 21

INDUSTRIAL DISPUTES

An industrial dispute may be defined as a conflict or difference of opinion between management and workers on
the terms of employment.

Causes
(1) Economic Causes:
(a) Wages: The demand for wage increase is the prime-most cause of the industrial disputes. A large number of
strikes are being organised to raise a voice against the rise in prices and cost of living.
The real wages of the workers decline faster with the increase in price level and they feel dissatisfied with their
present emoluments and struggle for the improvement in wages. By having a cursory glance on the history of
industrial disputes; it becomes clear that cause of most of the industrial disputes was wages. The Indian employer
has no clear-cut and enlightened wage policy.
(b) Dearness Allowance and Bonus: Increase in cost of living was the main cause of the demand of dearness
allowance by the workers to equate their wages with the rise in prices. Bonus also plays an important role as a cause
of industrial dispute. It is interesting to note that in 1966, 49 percent of the disputes were related to wages and
bonus.
Both the quantum and the method of bonus payment have led to a number of disputes. There is an increasing
feeling among the workers that they should have a greater share in the profits of the concern and this fact has
not been recognised by the employees and non-acceptance of this fact has been a source of friction among
employers and employees.
(c) Working Condition and Working Hours: The working conditions in Indian industries are not hygienic. There is
not ample provision of water, heating, lighting, safety etc. Working hours are also greater. The demand of palatable
working conditions and shorter hours of work are also responsible for labour disputes.
(d) Modernisation and Automation of Plant and Machinery: The attempt at modernisation and introduction of
automatic machinery to replace labour has been the major cause of disputes in India. Workers go on strike, off and
on, to resist rationalisation and automation. A strike in cotton textile industry in Kanpur in 1955 is an example of
such disputes. Workers in Life Insurance.
(e) High Industrial Profits: During and after the world wars, prices of the commodities went up and the
industrialists earned huge profits. In order to get share in the prosperity of the industry, it naturally led to the
resentment on their part. The increased profits also led to the demands of higher wages and bonus. Now in the
changing world, concept of labour has changed considerably. They think themselves as a partner of the industry
and demand their share in the profits.
(f) Demand for Other Facilities: Demand for other facilities for meeting out their basic needs such as medical,
education, housing, etc., encourage the workers to resort to direct action because such facilities were denied by
the employers.
(2) Managerial Causes of Industrial Disputes:
These causes include autocratic managerial attitude and defective labour policies etc.
(a) Denial of Recognition to Trade Unions: Failure on the part of the employer to recognise the trade unions or to
recognise the rival union for representation, insult of trade union leaders by the employers are some of the

1
examples of autocratic managerial attitude worth mentioning as the causes of industrial disputes. The attitude of
employers towards the labour associations had never been sympathetic. They want to divide them and rule.
Moreover, the management is generally not willing to talk over the dispute with the workers or workers’
representatives or refer it to ‘arbitration’ even when the workers are willing to do so.
(b) Defective Recruitment Policies: The recruitment practices in Indian industries are defective. Recruitment is
generally made by the contractors who exploit the workers and suppress their individuality. The defective
promotion, demotion, transfer and placement policies encourage dissatisfaction among workers.
(c) Irregular Lay-Off and Retrenchment: Lay-off and retrenchment are reasons to be mentioned for encouraging
industrial disputes. Indian employers follow the policy of ‘Hire and Fire’. As a matter of practice, workers are not
made permanent for a pretty long time to deprive them of their legitimate rights.
(d) Defiance of Agreements and Codes: The employers regularly defy the provisions of collective bargaining
agreements and code of conduct and code of discipline with a view to harass or exploit the employees and just
encourage strife.
(e) Defective Leadership: Inefficient leadership is also one of the causes of disputes. Leadership from the
management and from the workers is quite incompetent to induce the workers to get them worked. The employers’
representatives are not delegated sufficient authority to negotiate with the workers.
They are not in a position to commit anything to workers on behalf of the management. Defective management
leadership ignored the labour problems and inefficient labour leadership could not coordinate the efforts of their
fellow members, so disputes arise.

Machinery for prevention and settlement of industrial disputes

1. Works committees: This committee represents workers and employers. Under the Industrial Disputes Act
1947, works committees exist in industrial establishments in which one hundred or more workmen are employed
during the previous year.

It is the duty of the works Committee to promote measures for securing and preserving amity and good relations

between the employers and workers. It also deals with certain matters viz. Condition of work, amenities, safety

and accident prevention, educational and recreational facilities.

The works committee started in India because of the Industrial Dispute Act 1947. It was this act which stated

that “in case of any industrial establishment in which 100 or more workers are employed or have been employed on

any day in the preceding twelve months the appropriate government may by general or special order require the

employer to constitute in the prescribed manner a Works Committee consisting of representatives of employers

and workman”. The objective of the works committee is to create cordial relations between the management and

the workers. The Works Committee does not perform any administrative function it is an advisory body. It is not

expected to deal with matters relating to wages, allowances, bonus, etc.

2
2. Conciliation officers: Conciliation Officers are appointed by the government under the Industrial Disputes Act,
1947.

The duties of conciliation officer are given below:

(i) He has to evolve a fair and amicable settlement of the dispute. In case of public utility service, he must hold

conciliation proceedings in the prescribed manner.

(ii) He shall send a report to the government if a dispute is settled in the course of conciliation proceedings along

with the charter of the settlement signed by the parties.

(iii) Where no settlement is reached, conciliation officer sends a report to the government indicating the steps

taken by him for ascertaining the facts, circumstances relating to dispute and the reasons on account of which

settlement within 14 days of the commencement of the conciliation proceedings.


3. Boards of conciliation: The government can also appoint a Board of Conciliation for promoting settlement of
Industrial Disputes. The chairman of the board is an independent person and other members (may be two or four)
are to be equally represented by the parties to the disputes.

The duties of the board include:

(a) To investigate the dispute and all matters affecting the merits and do everything fit for the purpose of

inducing the parties to reach a fair and amicable settlement.

(b) A report has to be sent to the government by the board if a dispute has been settled or not within two months

of the date on which the disputes were referred to it.


4. Court of enquiry: The government may appoint a Court of enquiry for enquiring into any industrial dispute. A
court may consist of one person or more that one person and in that case one of the persons will be the chairman.
The Court shall be required to enquire into the matter and submit its report to the government within a period of
six months.
5. Labour courts: As per the second schedule of the Industrial Dispute Act 1947.

The government sets up Labour Courts to deal with matters such as:

(i) The propriety or legality of an order passed by an employer under the standing orders.

(ii) The application and interpretation of standing orders passed.

(iii)Discharge or dismissal of workmen including reinstatement, grant of relief to workers who are wrongfully

dismissed.

(iv)Withdrawal of any customary concession of privilege

(v) Illegality or otherwise of a strike or lockout, and all other matters not specified in the third schedule.

3
6. Industrial Tribunals: A Tribunal is appointed by the government for the adjudication of Industrial disputes.
7. National Tribunal: A National tribunals is constituted by the Central government for Industrial Disputes
involving question of national importance.
8. Arbitration: The employer and employees may agree to settle the dispute by appointing an independent and
impartial person called Arbitrator. Arbitration provides justice at minimum cost.

MODERN METHODS OF PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL

1. Management by Objectives: This concept was given by Peter.F.Drucker, according to him, the performance of an
employee can be assessed on the basis of the targets achieved by him as set by the management of an
organization.Firstly, the management sets the goals and communicate the same to the employees, and then the
performance of an employee is compared against these set goals and is evaluated on this basis.
In case the employee is not able to achieve the pre-established goals, then management decides on a new strategy
or policy that should be undertaken for the accomplishment of unattainable goals.
2. Psychological Appraisals: This is one of the most frequently used modern methods of performance appraisal,
wherein the psychologist assesses the employee’s potential for the future performance rather than the past one.
Under this method, the psychologist conducts the in-depth interviews, psychological tests, discussions with the
supervisors and the reviews of other evaluations.
This assessment is done to determine the intellectual, emotional, motivational and other related characteristics of
an employee that is necessary to predict his potential for the future performance.
3. Assessment Centres: The assessment center is the central location where the managers come and perform the
job exercises. Here the assessee is requested to participate in in-basket exercises, role playing, discussions,
computer simulations, etc. Where they are evaluated in term of their persuasive ability, communication skills,
confidence, sensitivity to the feelings of others, mental alertness, administrative ability, etc.
This entire exercise is done under the trainer who observes the employee behavior and then discusses it with the
rater who finally evaluates the employee’s performance.
4. 360-Degree Feedback: It is a feedback method wherein the details of an employee’s performance is gathered
from other stakeholders such as superiors, peers, team members and self. In this method, the employee is asked
about himself, i.e. what he feels about his performance, and then accordingly he can realize his strengths and
weaknesses.
Also, the peers or team members are asked about assessee’s performance through which the employee knows about
what others feel about him and can overcome his disbeliefs if any. Thus, this method is used to have a detailed
evaluation of an employee from all the perspectives.
5. 720-Degree Feedback: This is an another feedback method, wherein the assessment is done not only by the
stakeholders within the company but also from the groups outside the organization. These external groups who
assesses the employee’s performance are customers, investors, suppliers and other financial institutions.
It is one of the most crucial modern methods of performance appraisal because this is the only group that
determines the success of the organization as a whole.

WORKERS PARTICIPATION IN MANAGEMENT


Workers participation in management refers to the participation of non-managerial employees in the decision-
making process of the organisation. Workers participation gives employees the mental and psychological
satisfaction and thereby increase their involvement in the affairs of the organization. Workers participation in
management is the most accepted principle of industrial relations in modern industry throughout the world and in
India too. In the words of Keith Davis “Participation is a mental and emotional involvement of a person in a group
situation which encourages to contribute to group goals or objectives and share responsibilities.”
Workers participation is a system where the workers get the rights to participate in decisions on issues which are
of concern to the workers like wages, working conditions, safety, welfare, sharing of gain, production related

4
aspects, incentives and allowances were considered to be legitimate areas of workers concern and therefore
workers should be consulted when these are determined.

Objectives
1. To prevent workers from exploitation by the management or by the owners of the organisation.
2. To have democracy in the organization.
3. To have proper development of the working class.
4. To resolve conflicts and differences between management and employees in a democratic manner.
5. To create in employees a sense of participation in industry.
6. To encourage suggestions from employees.
7. To improve the working and living conditions of employees.
8. To promote better understanding between labours and management on the various issues of the organizations.
9. To give employees a better understanding of their role in the working of the industry.
10. To give the employees an opportunity for self-expression leading to industrial peace, good relations and
increased co-operation.

TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT


BASIS FOR
TRAINING DEVELOPMENT
COMPARISON

Meaning Training is a learning process in which Development is an educational process


employees get an opportunity to develop skill, which is concerned with the overall
competency and knowledge as per the job growth of the employees.
requirement.

Term Short Term Long Term

Focus on Present Future

Orientation Job oriented Career oriented

Motivation Trainer Self

Objective To improve the work performances of the To prepare employees for future
employees. challenges.

Number of Many Only one


Individuals

Aim Specific job related Conceptual and general knowledge

5
TRAINING PROCESS

Step 1: Decide If Training is needed

The first step in the training process is a basic one: to determine whether a problem can be solved by training.
Training is conducted for one or more of these reasons: 1) Required legally or by order or regulation 2) to improve
job skills or move into a different position 3) for an organization to remain competitive and profitable. If
employees are not performing their jobs properly, it is often assumed that training will bring them up to standard.
This may not always be the case. Ideally, training should be provided before problems or accidents occur and
should be maintained as part of quality control.

Step 2: Determine What Type of Training is needed


The employees themselves can provide valuable information on the training they need. They know what they
need/want to make them better at their jobs. Just ask them! Also, regulatory considerations may require certain
training in certain industries and/or job classifications. Once the kind of training that is needed has been
determined, it is equally important to determine what kind of training is not needed. Training should focus on those
steps on which improved performance is needed. This avoids unnecessary time lost and focuses the training to meet
the needs of the employees.

Step 3: Identifying Goals and Objectives

Once the employees' training needs have been identified, employers can then prepare for the training. Clearly
stated training objectives will help employers communicate what they want
their employees to do, to do better, or to stop doing! Learning objectives
do not necessarily have to be written, but in order for the training to be as
successful as possible, they should be CLEAR and thought–out before the
training begins.

Step 4: Implementing the Training

Training should be conducted by professionals with knowledge and


expertise in the given subject area; period. Nothing is worse than being in a
classroom with an instructor who has no knowledge of what they are
supposed to be teaching! Use in-house, experienced talent or an outside
professional training source as the best option. The training should be
presented so that its organization and meaning are clear to employees. An
effective training program allows employees to participate in the training
process and to practice their skills and/or knowledge. Employees should be
encouraged to become involved in the training process by participating in
discussions, asking questions, contributing their knowledge and expertise,
learning through hands–on experiences, and even through role–playing
exercises.

Step 5: Evaluation Training Program

One way to make sure that the training program is accomplishing its goals is
by using an evaluation of the training by both the students and the
instructors Training should have, as one of its critical components, a
method of measuring the effectiveness of the training. Evaluations will help employers or supervisors determine
the amount of learning achieved and whether or not an employee's performance has improved on

6
FEATURES OF AN EMPLOYEE DISCIPLINARY SYSTEM
1. Knowledge of Rules: The employee must be informed clearly about what constitutes good behavior and the
rewards that may emanate from it. All instructions should be clear and understandable. It is common sense that an
employee will obey an instruction more readily if he understands it. The supervisor himself must know all the rules.
He cannot effectively communicate with his workers if his own knowledge about rules is half baked. In fact, he needs
to know more than the barest minimum that he wants his workers to know. This reserve of knowledge is essential in
order to be able to answer several unexpected question from workers. In other works, a supervisor’s span of
knowledge and understanding of rules should be greater than that of his workers. If this is not so, the supervisor
will lose personal prestige both before his supervisors and subordinates.
2. Prompt Action: All violations and misconducts-big and small-should be promptly inquired into. For example, a
supervisor is most unwise to wait until lunch break before rebuking a worker for arriving late. Beat the iron when it
is hot. This is because when the penalty is imposed immediately following the violation of a rule the person punished
tends to identify the punishment with the act he committed. Accordingly, the subordinate attempts to avoid the
violation in future. This is called the “law of effect”. The greater the delay the more one forgets and the more one
feels that punishment is not deserved.
3. Fair Action: Promptness of disciplinary action at the cost of its fairness is not proper. An action in order to be
fair must possess the following characteristics:
 All violations-big and small-should be duly punished. A violation should not be overlooked or condoned merely because
it is small otherwise this will give an impression that announced rules are meaningless.
 All individuals-big and small-should receive equal punishment for equal indiscipline. If a rule is applied to one individual
but not to another, the management is bound to be accused of favoritism.
 Discipline should be uniformly enforced at all times. If management soft-pedals on taking a disciplinary action when
there is shortage of labor and toughens its policy when labor is plentiful it is acting arbitrarily. Similarly, if the
management overlooks a wrong on one occasion and punishes it on another occasion it is acting inconsistently.
Inconsistent behavior of management leads to uncertainty in the minds of subordinates. They simply do not know
where they stand.
4. Well Defined Procedure: The procedure to be followed to reach to a penalty decision should be carefully laid
down. It should include the following steps:
 The supervisor must assure himself that some violation of the rules has taken place.
 He should state precisely and objectively the nature of the alleged violation.
 He should then proceed to gather full facts about the case and maintain proper records. Facts will have to be
gathered concerning the nature of the event, the participants and the surrounding circumstances. Extenuating
circumstances such as ill-health, family troubles, etc., should be found out. A critical analysis should be made of the
person’s background such as his past service record, length of service, local practice, etc. Fact gathering is often a
process of fact-sifting. Opinions should not be mistaken for facts. The methods used for gathering the fact must
not smack of spying and statements should not be prejudged.
5. Constructive Handling of Disciplinary Action: Disciplinary action should be handled in a constructive manner. It
should be carried out by the immediate line supervisor. This employee should be told not only the reasons for the
action taken against him but also how he can avoid such penalties in future. Disciplinary action should be taken in
private. By exposing an employee to public ridicule the supervisor attacks his dignity and social standing. This may
produce an opposite effect on the employee. He may react violently or may become obstinate to preserve his ego.
It is most unwise for a supervisor to take a general disciplinary action against a group of subordinates. Disciplinary
action is a matter for the individual. It is the individual who should be held responsible for any wrong. A management
which takes disciplinary action against a group is likely to set off a wave of unrest associated with falling morale and
even the possibility of wildcat strike.
After the disciplinary action has been taken the supervisor must assume a normal attitude towards the employee. He
should revert to his role of a helping hand-as if nothing has happened. This is possible only when the supervisor uses
an impersonal approach in administering a penalty. He should not engage in personal ridicule, insult or even criticism.

7
He should avoid getting into an argument. In short, he must play the role of a judge enforcing the law with
impartiality.

DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURE

Before starting the process of discipline, it is essential to hold a preliminary inquiry to know if a prima facie case
of indiscipline and misconduct exist. After this, the following steps should be followed:

1. Issue of charge sheet: Once the prima facie case of misconduct is established, the management should
proceed to issue a charge sheet to the employee. Charge sheet is merely a notice of the charge and provides the
employee an opportunity to explain his conduct. Therefore, charge sheet is generally known as a slow cause notice.
In the charge sheet, each charge should be clearly specified. There should be a separate charge for each
allegation and charge should not relate to any matter, which has already been decided upon. I would suggest each
one of you to talk to find out how is a charge sheet prepared. We will discuss that in the next class.

2. Consideration of Explanation. On getting the answer for the charge sheet served, the explanation furnished
should be considered and if it is satisfactory, no disciplinary action needs to be taken. On the contrary when the
management is not satisfied with the employee’s explanation, it can proceed with full-fledged enquiry. (However, if
the worker admits the charge, the employer can warn him or award him punishment without further enquiry.)

3. Suspension pending Enquiry. In case the charge is grave that is serious, a suspension order may be served on
the employee along with the charge sheet. According to the Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1946,
the suspended worker is to be paid a subsistence allowance equal to one-half of his wages for the first ninety days
of suspension and three-fourths of wages for the remaining period of suspension if the delay in the completion of
disciplinary proceedings is not due to the worker’s conduct.

What is grave will depend on the discretion of the management. It has to be decided in accordance with the Code
of Discipline.

4. Holding of Enquiry. An enquiry officer should be appointed to hold the enquiry and a notice to this effect
should be given to the concerned worker. Principle of natural justice must be followed. The worker should not be
denied the chance of explaining himself. The enquiry officer should give sufficient notice to the worker so that he
may prepare to represent his case and make submission in his defense. The enquiry officer should proceed in a
proper manner and examine witnesses. Fair opportunity should be given to the worker to cross-examine the
management witnesses.

The principles of natural justice can be summarized as follows:


Principle of Natural Justice
 Tell the person what he has done
 Hear Him
 Give Him a Chance to defend himself
On the conclusion of the enquiry, the enquiry officer should record his findings and the reasons thereof. He should
refrain from recommending punishment and leave it to the decision of the appropriate authority. After all he is
just an enquiry officer!!

5. Order of Punishment. Disciplinary action can be taken when the misconduct of the employee is proved. While
deciding the nature of disciplinary action, the employee’s previous record, precedents, effects of the action on
other employees, etc, have to be considered.

When the employee feels that the enquiry conducted was not proper and the action taken unjustified, he must be
given a chance to make appeal.

8
PROCESS OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING
1. Preparation: At the very first step, both the representatives of each party prepares the negotiations to
be carried out during the meeting. Each member should be well versed with the issues to be raised at the
meeting and should have adequate knowledge of the labor laws.
The management should be well prepared with the proposals of change required in the employment terms
and be ready with the statistical figures to justify its stand.
On the other hand, the union must gather adequate information regarding the financial position of the
business along with its ability to pay and prepare a detailed report on the issues and the desires of the
workers.
2. Discuss: Here, both the parties decide the ground rules that will guide the negotiations and the prime
negotiator is from the management team who will lead the discussion. Also, the issues for which the
meeting is held, are identified at this stage.
The issues could be related to the wages, supplementary economic benefits (pension plans, health
insurance, paid holidays, etc.), Institutional issues (rights and duties, ESOP plan), and Administrative
issues (health and safety, technological changes, job security, working conditions).
3. Propose: At this stage, the chief negotiator begins the conversation with an opening statement and then
both the parties put forth their initial demands. This session can be called as a brainstorming, where each
party gives their opinion that leads to arguments and counter arguments.
4. Bargain: The negotiation begins at this stage, where each party tries to win over the other. The
negotiation can go for days until a final agreement is reached. Sometimes, both the parties reach an
amicable solution soon, but at times to settle down the dispute the third party intervenes into the
negotiation in the form of arbitration or adjudication.
5. Settlement: This is the final stage of the collective bargaining process, where both the parties agree on
a common solution to the problem discussed so far. Hence, a mutual agreement is formed between the
employee and the employer which is to be signed by each party to give the decision a universal acceptance.
Thus, to get the dispute settled the management must follow these steps systematically and give equal
chance to the workers to speak out their minds.

PROBLEMS FACED BY TRADE UNIONS IN INDIA


The shortcomings or the weakness of the trade union movement in India are as follows:

1. Lack of Balanced Growth: Trade unions are often associated with big industrial houses. A vast majority of
the working population is without any union backing. The entire agricultural sector is highly unorganized in
India. The agricultural workers are subject to all kinds of exploitation. The same is true with respect to
those working in small scale and cottage industries. Lack of balanced growth of trade unions in all sectors
is one of the major weakness of the trade union movement in India.
2. Low Membership: Trade unions, with the exception of few have low membership. This is because many
employees are not willing to join unions although they are ready to enjoy the benefits arising out of the
union actions. The reasons for the hesitation of employees to join unions include, among others, the need to
take part in strikes and such other programmes, fear of pay cut and fear of punishment.
3. Poor financial Position: Low membership is one of the reasons for the poor financial position of the unions.
Moreover, the subscription payable by every member is kept low. Some members may not even make a
prompt payment of the small amount of subscription. These are also not very many sources from which
unions can get funds. They may probably depend on contributions from philanthropists. The poor financial
position can only weaken the trade union movement.
4. Political Control: Most popular trade unions in India are affiliated to certain political parties. These political
parties are only keen on making every grievance of the working class a political issue to attain political gains.
As a result the problem only gets wide publicity and remains unsolved.
5. Multiplicity of Unions: Often there exists more than one union within the same industry each backed by a
political party. These various unions have conflicting ideology. If one union comes out with a strike proposal
another union may work against it. As a result, none of the unions is actually able to solve the problems of
the workers.
9
6. Inter-Union Rivalry: The existence of many unions within a particular industry paves way for what is called
inter-union rivalry. These unions do not work together for the cause of the workers. Each union may adopt
a different approach to the problem. The inter-union rivalry may become a more serious problem of the
workers. As a result, the employees are unable to derive the benefits of collective bargaining.
7. Lack of able Leaders: Another barrier to the growth of trade unions is the lack of able leaders. Some
union leaders give a strike call even for petty problems that can easily be resolved through talks. On the
other hand, there are leaders who have secret pact with the management. They get bribes from the
government and work against the interests of the employees. Some leaders don’t convene a meeting of the
general body at all even when a crisis develops. They take unilateral decisions that are thrust on the
employees.
8. Lack of Recognition: Most management is not prepared to recognize trade unions. This happens because
of any of the following reason.
 The existence of low membership that reduces the bargaining power of the union.
 The existence of more unions within the same industry.
 Inter-union rivalry.
 The indifferent attitude of the employees themselves towards trade unions.
9. Opposition from Employers: Apart from the fact that most employers are not prepared to recognize trade
unions, they also do not let their employees from a union. This the employers are able to achieve by adopting
certain punitive measures like intimidating employees victimizing union leaders, initiating disciplinary action
against employees indulging in union activities and so on. Some employers also start rival unions with the
support of certain employees. Sometimes, they may go to the extent of bribing union leaders to avert a
strike or such similar show of protest by employees. The employers fail to understand that the union enables
the employees to express their grievances in a democratic manner and can also be used as a means of
promoting better labor management relationships.
10. Indifferent Attitude of the Members: Union leaders alone cannot be blamed for the weakness of the
trade union movement. The indifferent attitude of the members of certain unions is also a barrier. Some
members do not even make a prompt payment of the subscription amount. The treasurer of the union has
to go behind them, remind and persuade them to pay the subscription that is often a very small amount.
There are on the other hand, members who do not attend the general body meetings nor do they bother to
know what is discussed in such meetings. There are still others who do not take part at all in any of the
programmes of the union organized to press the demands of the employees like slogan shouting procession,
demonstration, hunger strike etc. Members generally expect the office-bearers to do all that is necessary
to achieve the demands.

APPROACHES TO INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS


The Industrial Relations or IR shows the relationship between the management and the workmen within
the industry and the role of a regulatory body to resolve the industrial disputes.

1. Unitary Approach: The unitary approach is based on the notion that all the members of the organization
Viz. Managers, workers, and other staff have a common set of objectives, purposes and interests and,
therefore, work in unison towards the accomplishment of shared goals. Here, the conflict is seen as a
temporary divergence which is caused due to the poor management or the negligence on the part of the
employees to understand and mix with the organizational culture.
The unitary approach is based on the assumption that the overall profitability of the firm could be
increased if everyone in the organization has the common interest/purpose and works unanimously
towards its completion thereby establishing the harmonious relations. Here the strikes are considered as
destructive.
2. Pluralistic Approach: The pluralistic approach is just the opposite of unitary approach which is based on
the assumption that an organization is an alliance of powerful and divergent sub-groups (management and
trade unions), having different competing interests are mediated by the management. The management
and the trade unions (association of workers) are the powerful sub-groups that may not agree with

10
certain terms and conditions prevailing in the organization and to resolve those management tries to
mediate the interest of both the groups.
During mediation, if the management pays less attention to the needs of the workers then they form
unions in order to protect their interest and influence the management decision. The unions so formed
helps in balancing the power between the management and employees. Thus, it is based on the notion that
the conflict between the management and the employees is inevitable and is viewed as instrumental in the
innovation and growth.
3. Marxist Approach: The Marxist approach is based on the basic assumption that the conflict is regarded
as the product of a capitalist society. This means that conflict arises not just because of the rift
between the employee and the employer, but also because of the division in the society between those
who owns the means of production (capitalists) and the ones who have only labor to offer. The ultimate
objective of the capitalists is to increase the productivity by paying possible minimum wages to the
workers due to which the latter feels exploited.
To overcome such situation workers form unions so as to safeguard their interests. These trade unions
are considered as a weapon to bring about a revolutionary social change that focuses on improving the
overall position of the workers in the capitalist system and not to overthrow. Unlike the pluralist
approach, the Marxist believes that the state intervention via legislation and industrial tribunals work in
the interest of the management and do not ensure a balance between the competing groups. Thus,
according to this approach, the pluralist supports the capitalism, and the unitary approach is anathema.

4. Human Relations Approach: The Human relations approach is propounded by Elton Mayo, who is a
humanist and believes in the positive nature of the employees. According to him, given human initiatives
from management, the employees positively listens and responds properly to them and hence there is no
room left for the conflict to arise. But however Marxists and Pluralists did not appreciate too much
stress on the positive nature of the workers.
Thus, these approaches to industrial relations must be properly understood by the HR managers as these
offer a solid foundation for much of the role of human resource management.

HOW TO MANAGE EMPLOYEE GRIEVANCE


Resolving employee grievance is usually not an easy task. The one thing that will assure handling it
effectively is to approach it systematically, and that is through following the employee grievance process.

On top of implementing a systematic grievance process, here are a few other things that you can do to
ensure grievances of employees are properly managed and resolved.

Find
that a permanent
temporary
on a bigger
will, asfix.
scale,
much solution:
A temporary
since
as Solve,
possible,
the root
fix
put
is dosolution
cause
the
no not troubleshoot.
grievance
is still all, sinceYour
there.
at brought by
the goal
the should
problem
employee be
to to
is bound come
rest, up up
to come
ratherwith
thana provide
solution
again, probably
a

Therefore, your goal should be to eliminate the root cause of the problem. Remove the reason for the
employee’s complaint.

Listen, and listen well:

Remember,
plausible
complaint
frustratedat
isemployee.
all
first,
a complaint,
grievances
and even
and
put
ifitthey
forth
denotes
are
by brought
employees
dissatisfaction
up must
in very
of
becasual
an
heard
employee.
conversations,
and listened
No oneto.
wants
asEven
if inaif
passing.
dissatisfied
they doAnotand
seem

It is important for people who are in charge of carrying out the grievance process to be good listeners.
This is the first step toward finding a resolution to the grievance. By listening, you are also encouraging
the employee to be more confident in resolving his complaint. If the employee feels that he is simply
being patronized and that he is not being taken seriously, he might take his complaint outside the
company, resulting in litigation that will prove to be far more tedious, costly, and damaging to the company
and its reputation.

One mistake that you should avoid is to treat the employee with hostility and be wholly unwelcome about
the fact that he is taking his concerns forward. Three possible outcomes can be expected from this
scenario. The first may involve the employee cowering and slinking away with his complaints. He may even

11
start to feel guilty about trying to air his complaints, and he will feel guarded around others. You will then
find him still working, but with dissatisfaction that continuously eats away at him, eventually affecting his
job performance and productivity.

The second possible outcome involves the courts, with the employee taking legal action against his
employers if it is a violation that is against labor law. Finally, the employee can look for a different
company to work for and you will have to restart the hiring process to look for a replacement.

Clearly, we know what choice the company will prefer. It’s bad rep if your business is suddenly painted as
a company that is so problematic its own employees are taking it to court in a legal battle.

Respond quickly:

This pertains
handling
companies
eventually
backfire,of
and to
convince
may
histhe how swift
grievance.
take
employee
the
their andand
employee
time
may decisive
add
todrag
just the
another action
their
forget will
complaint
feet,
about bethe
probably
his
to once theand
complaint
hoping
list, grievance
that
andthat
give has
theisit been
passage
onup.
theBut received.
slow
ofthis
time will Some
progress
approach in may
the

Grievance proceedings should not be allowed to go on for months. Think about all the work that will be
affected in the interim. Most likely, the employee will not be able to perform at his peak when it comes to
his assigned tasks because a huge chunk of his attention is occupied by the question on when his concerns
will be tackled by the grievance committee.

In the same vein, as discussed earlier, once a decision has been arrived at, communicating the decision to
the employee should also be done quickly. Do not put it off for later.

Keep an open mind: T

his is in line
unbiased
whether
prejudged it with
asthe
isyou acknowledging
valid
situation.
will
orlater
not.This thatit
represent
By showing
means askepticism
grievance
that
to be. exists, even
your objectivity
and doubt,will
you ifbeyou
are are
shot, still
alsoand in the
showing
the process
decision
that you
mayofnot
determining
alreadybehave
as

Being antagonistic and hostile is also counterproductive. Anyone tasked to handle employee grievance must
maintain a degree of independence from their employer. Throughout the whole process, you should keep
an open mind and get all the facts before arriving at conclusions and making decisions. Leave all your
prejudices outside the door whenever you are sitting down to investigate the facts.

Come
to
event
canresolve
cover
that
up with
all
the
theyour
issue.
alternative
first
bases
course
As much
andcourses
of
avoid
as
action
possible,
wasting
ofwill
actions:
not
identify
time
bein
It
acceptable
thinking
other
is not enough
options,
oftoother
the
to
just
concerned
come
solutions.
so you
up with
will
parties.
have
a single
alternatives
This
course
is so that
of in
action
the
you

If you already have a number of alternatives to choose from, the time to resolve the issue – as well as the
costs and resources involved –will be cut down considerably.

Keepwhole
things
able
the all
toto communication
connect
follow
process,
and
up on.
and lineswhen
open:
communicate
even And
with
it is not
you
over just
and
andtheduring
the issuethe
other hasinvestigation
members
been of period.
resolved,
the grievanceThe
in case employee
committee
there should be
are other
throughout

Be responsive whenever the employee reaches out to you. Schedule follow-up meetings when necessary,
and ensure that the people involved are truly involved. Think of the grievance committee as one of the
bridges that link employees to their employers, and if they are unable to communicate with the people in
charge of handling grievances, then the essence of that “link” is gone.

Document every step of the grievance process:

This is very important, not just as a matter of record or for future reference, but to be kept apprised
and up to date on the progress of the process. A similar grievance may crop up in the future, and so you
already have something to start on.

The documentation will also come in handy when management decides to develop or improve its internal
policies on personnel administration, worker and employee welfare, and similar management aspects and
issues.

Establish and implement good policies on handling employee grievance.

Finally, the best thing that a company can do to handle employee grievances is to have a sound grievance
machinery or system in place. This is to avoid complications in the future when employees file more
complaints, because there is already a guide or a roadmap that can be followed by the grievance
committee.
12
SALARY AND WAGE

BASIS FOR
SALARY WAGE
COMPARISON

Meaning A fixed pay that an individual draws A variable pay that an individual draws on
for the work done by him on an the basis of hours spent in completing the
annual basis. certain amount of work.

Skills Skilled personnel Semi-skilled or unskilled

Type of cost Fixed Variable

Rate of payment Fixed rate Wage rate

Payment cycle Monthly Daily

Basis of payment Performance basis Hourly basis

Paid to whom Employees Labor

Nature of work Administrative-office work Manufacturing-process work

KRA Yes No
(Key resultant
area)

Extra pay for No Yes


extra hours

JOB ROTATION
A job design technique in which employees are moved between two or more jobs in a planned manner. The
objective is to expose the employees to different experiences and wider variety of skills to enhance job
satisfaction and to cross-train them.
Job Rotation is the management technique wherein an employee is shifted from one job role to the other,
with the purpose of familiarizing him with all the verticals of an organization.

13
Generally, the management trainees who are a fresher in the business world are shifted to different job
positions to make them understand the functions of business more precisely. The purpose of a job
rotation is to reduce the monotony of work and letting an employee to acquire multi skills required for
performing different tasks in the organization.

Advantages of Job Rotation

1. Reduces the monotony of work


2. Broadens one’s knowledge and skills
3. Helps the management to explore the hidden talent of an individual
4. Helps an individual to realize his own interest
5. Helps in creating the right employee job fit
6. Developing a wider range of experience
Disadvantages of Job Rotation

1. Reduces uniformity of work


2. Fear of performing another task effectively
3. Frequent interruptions in the work
4. Misunderstanding between the team members or union.
5. Difficulty in coping with other team members
6. Fear of getting more tedious or a hectic work

The job rotation is beneficial for both the employer and the employee. The employer can identify the
vertical where the employee is giving his best and can also place him in the position of a person who has
left because of the retirement, transfer, termination or any other reason.

HRD AND HRM

BASIS FOR
HRM HRD
COMPARISON

Meaning Human Resource Management Human Resource Development means a


refers to the application of continuous development function that
principles of management to intends to improve the performance of
manage the people working in the people working in the organization.
organization.

What is it? Management function. Subset of Human Resource


Management.

Function Reactive Proactive

Objective To improve the performance of To develop the skills, knowledge and


the employees. competency of employees.

Process Routine Ongoing

14
BASIS FOR
HRM HRD
COMPARISON

Dependency Independent It is a subsystem.

Concerned with People only Development of the entire


organization.

PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT

Personnel Management is a part of management that deals with the recruitment, hiring, staffing,
development, and compensation of the workforce and their relation with the organization to achieve the
organizational objectives. The primary functions of the personnel management are divided into two
categories:

 Operative Functions: The activities that are concerned with procurement, development,
compensation, job evaluation, employee welfare, utilization, maintenance and collective bargaining.
 Managerial Function: Planning, Organizing, Directing, Motivation, Control, and Coordination are the
basic managerial activities performed by Personnel Management.

HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

Human Resource Management is that specialized and organized branch of management which is concerned
with the acquisition, maintenance, development, utilization and coordination of people at work, in such a
manner that they will give their best to the enterprise. It refers to a systematic function of planning for
the human resource needs and demands, selection, training, compensation, and performance appraisal, to
meet those requirements.

15
Functions of HRM

Human Resource Management


is a continuous process of
ensuring the availability of
eligible and willing workforce
i.e. putting the right man at
the right job. In a nutshell, it
is an art of utilizing the
human resources of an
organization, in the most
efficient and effective way.
HRM covers a broad spectrum
of activities which includes:

 Employment
 Recruitment and
Selection
 Training and
Development
 Employee Services
 Salary and Wages
 Industrial Relations
 Health and safety
 Education
 Working conditions
 Appraisal and Assessment

PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT AND HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

BASIS FOR
PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
COMPARISON

Meaning The aspect of management that is The branch of management that focuses
concerned with the work force and on the most effective use of the
their relationship with the entity is manpower of an entity, to achieve the
known as Personnel Management. organizational goals is known as Human
Resource Management.

Approach Traditional Modern

Treatment of Machines or Tools Asset


manpower

Type of function Routine function Strategic function

Basis of Pay Job Evaluation Performance Evaluation

16
BASIS FOR
PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
COMPARISON

Management Transactional Transformational


Role

Communication Indirect Direct

Labor Collective Bargaining Contracts Individual Contracts


Management

Initiatives Piecemeal Integrated

Management Procedure Business needs


Actions

Decision Making Slow Fast

Job Design Division of Labor Groups/Teams

Focus Primarily on mundane activities like Treat manpower of the organization as


employee hiring, remunerating, valued assets, to be valued, used and
training, and harmony. preserved.

Human Resource Information System (HRIS)

Human Resource Information System or HRIS manages the hr policies, processes, and people in an
organization. Its powerful set of features work together to tackle the multi-faceted complexities of HR
processes. Every HRIS comes with an array of so-called ‘indispensable features’ that are said to cover
other vital processes and services. This allows HR activities and processes to occur electronically. In most
situations, a HRIS will also lead to increases in efficiency when it comes to making decisions in HR. The
decisions made should also increase in quality—and as a result, the productivity of both employees and
managers should increase and become more effective.

JOB SPECIFICATION
A job specification defines the knowledge, skills and abilities that are required to perform a job in an
organization. Job specification covers aspects like education, work-experience, managerial experience etc
which can help accomplish the goals related to the job. Job specification helps in the recruitment &
selection process, evaluating the performance of employees and in their appraisal & promotion. Job
specification, along with job description, is actually derived from job analysis. Collectively, job
specification and job description help in giving a overview of the job in terms of its title, position, roles,
responsibilities, education, experience, workplace etc.
Importance of Job Specification
The importance and purpose of job specification is a thoroughly understand the specific details of a job.
Jobs can be of different types and can require a different skill sets to get the maximum output from a
particular. Job specification gives important details related to the job like education & skills, prior work
experience, managerial experience, personality traits etc which would help an employee accomplish the
objectives of a job. For a recruiter, job specification lays down the guidelines basis of which the company
can recruit and select the best possible candidate who would be best suited for the job. Apart from

17
actually finding the right candidate or employee, job specification can be used for screening of resumes &
shortlist only those candidates who are the closest fit to the job. Hence, a job specification gives specific
details about a job and what kind of skill sets are required to complete the job.

Components of Job Specification


There are many parameters which are considered while giving the job specification for a certain profile.
1. Educational Qualification: This parameter gives an insight on how qualified a certain individual is. It
covers their basic school education, graduation, master’s degree, other certifications etc.
2. Experience: Job specification clearly highlights the experience required in a particular domain for
completing a specific job. It includes work experience which can be from a specific industry, position,
duration or in a particular domain. Managerial experience in handling and managing a team can also be a job
specification criteria required for a particular position
3. Skills & Knowledge: This is an important parameter in job specification especially with knowledge and
skill based profiles. The higher the position in a company, the more niche the skills become and more is
the knowledge required to perform the job. Skills like leadership, communication management, time
management, team management etc. are mentioned.
4. Personality traits and characteristics: The way in which a person behaves in a particular situation,
handles complex problems, generic behavior etc. are all covered in the characteristics of a job
description. It also covers the emotional intelligence of a person i.e. how strong or weak a person is
emotionally

Job Specification Example


Here is a sample job specification, which is prepared for a marketing manager in a telecom company.
Education Must be an engineer and MBA in marketing for a reputed MBA institute

Work experience Must have prior work experience in marketing & sales (preferably telecom or FMCG)
Skills & Knowledge 1. Must be a good communicator and must be able to lead a team.
2. Prior experience in handling ATL-BTL activities and managing promotional events.
3. Must be able to handle social media like Facebook, Twitter and help build online brand
4. Experience in managing PR and media
5. Strong analytical skills and problem solving skills
6. Must understand business, come up with innovative products and launch them

Personality Traits & 1. Must be presentable and a good orator


Characteristics 2. Should be calm in complex situations and show leadership skills in managing multiple
teams
3. Should be emotionally strong and should give timely deliverables
The above table is a sample of job specification. More specific details can also be put to give a better
understanding about the job.

Advantages of Job Specification


There are several benefits of having a comprehensive job specification. Some advantages are listed
below:
1. Job specification highlights all the specific details required to perform the job at its best
2. It gives the HR managers a threshold and a framework on the basis on which they can identify the best
prospects
3. Helps in screening of resumes and saves time when there are multiple applications by choosing those
who are closest to the job specification
4. HR managers can used job specification as a benchmark to evaluate employees and give them required
trainings
5. It also helps companies during performance appraisal and promotions

18
Disadvantages of Job Specification
There are certain limitations of job specification. Some of the disadvantages are mentioned below:
1. It is a time consuming process as it has to be very thorough and complete
2. Job description is time bound and changes with changing technology and changing knowledge & skill
requirements
3. It can only give a framework of emotional characteristics and personality traits but cannot specify the
experience or forecast complex issues is any
Hence, this concludes the definition of Job Specification along with its overview.

JOB DESCRIPTION
Job description is an informative documentation of the scope, duties, tasks, responsibilities and working
conditions related to the job listing in the organization through the process of job analysis. Job
Description also details the skills and qualifications that an individual applying for the job needs to
possess. It basically gives all the details which might be good for both the company and the applicant so
that both parties are on the same page regarding the job posting. Basically, job analysis is bifurcated into
two components namely job description and job specification.
The job description is used in the recruitment process to inform the applicants of the job profile and
requirements, and used at the performance management process to evaluate the employee’s performance
against the description.
Importance of Job Description
Job description is the most important thing which a candidate gets about a job listing. Job description
gives all the relevant and necessary details about a job. The details which can help one decide whether
the job is relevant or not. Qualifications, roles, responsibilities etc are included in the job description
document which paints a clear picture of what is expected from the particular role.

Job
Job Title Regional Sales Manager

Location NY,CA

The RSM would be responsible for the sales of territory assigned. The
territories would be in and around the job location.
Job The RSM should be motivated and willing to make decisions on his/her
Description own. The sales quota and targets would be predefined.
The RSM would be leading the local sales team of approx. 5-6 team size.
(The job description should cover all the details of the job)

Education Graduate with Business Degree/Diploma

Experience 7-8 years of experience in FMCG Sales

Description Components

19
A Job description will include
the following components:
- Roles and responsibilities of
the job.
- Goals of the organization as
well the goals to be achieved as
a part of the profile are
mentioned in the job
description.
- Qualifications in terms of
education and work experience
required have to be clearly
mentioned.
- Skill sets
like leadership, team
management, time
management, communication
management etc required to
fulfill the job
- Salary range of the job are
mentioned in the job
description

Steps to Write a Job Description


Companies have to make sure that they write an accurate & comprehensive job description giving all job-
related details. The main steps to write a job description are:
1. Job Title: The first step in writing the job description is to write the job title decided internally for
official purposes.
2. Role Summary: The second step in writing the job description is to write the summary about the job
role.
3. Duties: The next step involves writing down all the job responsibilities as well as the job duties which
are required with this particular job.
4. Qualifications: The fourth step in writing the job description is to give the basic education
qualifications, work experience or other criteria required for this job role.
5. Role Expectations: This step defines what is required by an employee to be successful.
6. Reporting: The sixth step in writing a good job description is to highlight who the reporting manager
would be and who would be the subordinates.
7. Verification: The final step is to get the job description verified by the HR team for any changes,
updates or validations.

Advantages of Job Description

There are many benefits of having a comprehensive job description given by a company. Some of the
advantages of job description are mentioned below:
1. Helps companies understand the type of candidate they should search for based on title, position and
location
2. Employees are well aware about their job roles & duties
3. Job description helps in understanding the workplace environment, benefits etc for a prospective
employee
4. Helps in better recruitment & selection

20
5. Job description clearly highlights all the requirements, objectives & goals that it wants an employee to
perform

Disadvantages of Job Description


Despite being a thorough documentation related to the job, there are certain limitation of job
description:
1. Job descriptions are time bound and can change with organization structure, industry policies, company
requirements etc
2. It can only highlight the macro criteria of a job but cannot fully explain the obstacles, emotional
requirements etc related to the job
3. Incomplete job description lacking quality information can misguide both the HR manager as well as the
employee
Hence, this concludes the definition of Job Description along with its overview.

JOB DESCRIPTON AND JOB SPECIFICATION

BASIS FOR
JOB DESCRIPTION JOB SPECIFICATION
COMPARISON

Meaning Job Description is a concise The statement which explains the


written statement, explaining minimum eligibility requirements,
about what are the major for performing a particular job is
requirements of a particular known as Job Specification.
job.

Lists out Job title, duties, tasks and Employee's qualification, skills and
responsibilities involved in a job. abilities.

What is it? It expresses what a prospective It expresses what an applicant must


employee must do when he will possess for getting selected.
get the placement

Prepared from Job Analysis Job Description

Describes Jobs Job Holders

Comprises of Designation, place of work, Educational qualifications,


scope, salary range, working experience, skills, knowledge, age,
hours, responsibilities, reporting abilities, work orientation factors,
authority etc. etc.

21