TRADE UNION Employees association constitutes one of the stakeholders in IR. These associations are popularly known as trade union .Trade unions are not mere striking and negotiation on behalf of workers. Their role is much wider. Union for example may make their presence felt in recruitment and selection. They may also decide who is to be hired and under what conditions. Union can also play an important role in deciding who is to be promoted, given a new job assignment, sent for training, terminated or laid off. And the role of union in IR is too well known. IT is, therefore, essential that we discuss the nature of union, why employees join union, present state of unions, their trends and other related aspects.
NATURE OF TRADE UNION
Trade union is voluntary organization of workers or employers formed to promote and protect their interests, through collective action. The trade Union act, 1926 defines a combination, whether temporary or permanent, formed (a) primarily for the purpose of regulation the relation between (i) Workmen and employers or (ii)between workmen and workmen, or(iv)between employers and employers, or(v)for imposing restrictive condition on the conduct of any trade or business, and includes any federation of two or more trade union.
Since the publication of the History of Trade Unionism  by Sidney and Beatrice Webb, the predominant historical view is that a trade union “is a continuous association of wage earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment”. A modern definition by the Australian Bureau of Statistics states that a trade union is “an organization consisting Predominantly of employees, the principal activities of which include the negotiation of rates of pay and conditions of employment for its members.
Trade unions have sometimes been seen as successors to the guilds of medieval Europe, though the relationship between the two is disputed. Medieval guilds existed to protect and enhance their members’ livelihoods though controlling the instructional capital of artisanship and the progression of members from apprentice tocraftsman, journeyman, and eventually to master and grandmasterof their craft. A trade union might include workers from only onetrade or craft, or might combine several or all the workers in onecompany or industry.
1. An analysis of works or employers. 2. Such a combination could be permanent or temporary, 3. Could include federation of two or more union, and 4. To relation among workmen, between and employers themselves. Trade unions and /or collective bargaining were o3utlawed from no later than the middle of the 14th century when the Ordinance of Laborers was enacted in the Kingdom of England.
A trade union or Labor union is an organization of workers that have banded together to achieve common goals such as better working conditions. The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members and negotiates labor contracts with employers. This may include the negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, workplace safety and policies. The agreements negotiated by the union leaders are binding on the rank and file members and the employer and in some cases on other non-member workers.
Manager has to make several strategic choices regarding the role of the organization. The most important choices are as follow: 1. Managers must decide whether the origination should remain union-free or allow unionization. 2. If unionization should be allowed, managers must decide what of union-management relationship they want. Once determined.\, they must take appropriate step to make this type of relationship a reality. 3. The management must also choose the type of tactic to use while negotiation a new wage settlement.
• Over the last three hundred years, many trade unions have developed into a number of forms, influenced by differing political objectives. Activities of trade unions vary, but may include:
• Provision of benefits to members: Early trade unions, like Friendly Societies, often provided a range of benefits to insure members against unemployment. Ill health, old age and funeral expenses. In many developed countries, these functions have been assumed by the state; however, the provision of professional training, legal advice and representation for members is still an important benefit of trade union membership.
WHY DO EMPLOYEES JOIN UNION?
Earlier, workers used to join union to protect themselves against exploitation by the management, or by force. Hire and fire policies, in human working condition, niggardly wage payments and longhours of work were common in the past, and workers joined union toseek protection against such practices. Not that Refusal to join led touse of muscle power. With a general increase in literacy, awarenessand economic status on the part not witnessed nowadays.Three rezones account for urination in any plant. They aredissatisfaction, lack of power, and union instrumentality.
When an individual these a job, certain condition of employment arespecified in the employment contract. A psychological contract alsoexists between employer and employee, consisting of theunspecified of the employee about reasonable working condition,requirements of the work itself, the level of that should be expendedon the job, and the nature of authority the employer should have indirection the employees work.The management and the HR department often contradict to thelevel of work dissatisfaction by doing the following;1.Giving unrealistic job previews that create expectation whichcannot be fulfilled.2.Designing jobs that fail to use the skills, and abilities of employees, and also fail to satisfy their personalities, interestsand preferences.3.Practicing poor day-to-day management and supervisorypractices, including unfair treatment and one-way downwardcommunication.4.Failing to tell employees that employee that the managementwould prefer to co-operated without unions and that theorganization is committed to treating employees with respect.
LACK OF POWER
Unionization may not be the first recourse dissatisfied employeeswill take. First, the employees seek to remove the dissatisfactionby his or her own effort. How far the employees shall succeed inremoving dissatisfaction depends on the essentiality andexclusivity of the job. Essentiality refers to the importance of the job holder and exclusivity implies the ease with which theemployees can be replaced. Power of employees to removedissatisfaction is high when his or her position in organization isextremely important and it is difficult to replace him or her. Union instrumentality
Employees perceive unions as being instrumental in removingtheir dissatiafaction.The more the employees derived that a unioncan up twain positive work aspects, the more instrumental theunion is for the employees. The employees then weight the valueof the benefits to be obtained, thought unionization, against itscost such as the lengthy organizing campaign and bad feelingamong supervisors, managers and other employees who may nitrelish unionization.Finally, the employees weight the costs and a debit against thelikelihood of a union instrumentality is high, employees will bemore willing to unionize.