Collective bargaining- Meaning, Definitions, Collective Bargaining in India

Principles of Collective Bargaining

Arnold F. Campo has laid ,down certain essential general principles of collective bargaining. These are:

For Union and Management:
(i) Collective bargaining should be made an educational as well as a bargaining process. It should offer to trade union leaders an opportunity to present to the management the wants, the desires, the grievances and the attitudes of its- employees, and make it possible for the management to explain to union leaders and, through them, to its employees, the economic problems which confront it.
(ii) The management and the trade union must look upon collective bargaining as a means of finding the best possible solution, and not as a means of’ acquiring as much as one can while conceding the minimum. There must be an honest attempt at solving a problem rather than at a compromise.
(iii) Both the parties to a dispute should command the respect of each other and should have enough bargaining power to enforce the terms of the agreement that may be arrived at.
(iv) There must be mutual confidence, good faith, and a desire to make collective bargaining effective in practice.
(v) There should be an honest, able and responsible leadership, for only this kind of leadership will make collective bargaining effective and meaningful.
(vi) The two parties should meticulously observe and abide by all the national and state laws which are applicable to collective bargaining.
(vii) Both the parties must bear in mind the fact that collective bargaining is, in a sense, a form of price fixation and that any successful collective bargaining depends, in the last analysis, on whether the management and the trade union do a good job of ensuring that the price of labour is properly adjusted to other prices.

For the Management:
(i) The management must develop and consistently follow a realistic labour policy, which should be accepted and implemented by all its representatives.
(ii) In order to ensure that the trade union feels that its position in the organisation or factory is secure, the management must grant recognition to it without any reservations and accept it as a constructive force in the organisation and the industry.
(iii) The management should not assume that employee goodwill will always be there for it. It should periodically examine the rules and regulations by which its labour force is governed. In this way, it will be able to determine the attitudes of its employees, promote their comfort, and gain their goodwill and co-operation.
(iv) The management should act upon the assumption that, in order to make the trade union a responsible and conservative body, it is essential that it should be fairly treated. It should, moreover, establish such a satisfactory relationship with the trade union and its representatives that the latter will not lightly do anything that is capable of jeopardising that relationship.
(v) The management should not wait for the trade union to bring employee grievances to its notice but should rather create the conditions in which the trade union will not do so, and should settle the grievances of the employees even before the trade union brings them to the notice of the management.
(vi) The management should deal with only one trade union in the organisation. If two trade unions seek recognition, no negotiations should be undertaken till one of them establishes the fact of having a majority of the membership of the employees in its organisation.
(vii) While weighing the economic consequences of collective bargaining, the management should place greater emphasis on social considerations.

For the Trade Union:
(i) In view of the rights granted to organised labour, it is essential that trade unions should eliminate racketeering and other undemocratic practices within their own organisations.
(ii) Trade union leaders should not imagine that their only function is to secure higher wages for their members, and shorter hours of work and better working conditions for them. They and their members have an obligation to assist the management in the elimination of waste and in improving the quality and quantity of production.
(iii) Trade union leaders should appreciate the economic implications of collective bargain¬ing, for their demands are generally met from the income and resources of the organisation in which their members are employed.
(iv) Trade union leaders should assist in the removal of such restrictive rules and regulations as are likely to increase costs and prices, reduce the amount that can be paid out as wages and tend to make for low employment and in the long-run lower the standard of living of all sections of society.
(v) Trade unions should resort to strikes only when all other methods of settling a dispute have failed to bring about satisfactory results.

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