Establishing Peaceful Employee Relations

21/10/2020 0 By indiafreenotes

Industrial relations are human relations in industry. The importance of the human factor in an industrial organisation is beyond question. Better management of industrial relations in an industry is a sine qua non for the success of the industrial concern. It results in industrial peace which is essential for the countries, particularly for India, where the economy is being geared in a planned way to ameliorate the lot of the masses.

Complete harmony between labour and capital may be a dream but quite a considerable amount of unrest and discontent among workers can be removed through efficient handling of industrial relations. It does not require much prudence to realise that in industry the human factor is most important; everywhere in production, man is needed, no matter how sophisticated machinery have been installed.

Interacting between management and workers and between worker and worker are regular features in industry and these constitute industrial relations. So, the importance of industrial relations in industry is self-evident and does not need any elucidation.

Industrial peace must be maintained at any cost to ensure better performance in industry. Industrial relations should be so maintained that it would contribute to increased productivity. Industrial relations have their impact not only on the industrial unit but also on the society.

Industrial friction may inflict lasting injury on the workers. It may affect their careers. Families of workers are likely to suffer which must have repercussion on the society as a whole. Industrial unrests and conflicts foment class-hatred, embitter mutual relations, and put a hurdle in the development of the society and the nation.

As S. C. Kuchhal rightly put it, “the larger the range they cover and the more fundamental the commodities or services they are associated with, the more marked is their influence and damage”. So, there is the impact of industrial relations not only on the economy of a country but also on its society and culture.

In a conflict between the workers and the em­ployer, it is not the fact that only one of the par­ties suffer, usually the workers. A close watch will reveal that it becomes a vital concern for the com­munity also. It has been rightly emphasised that “in the heat of the daily conflict, workers and em­ployers are apt to forget that they are only two limbs of the body politic and that there is always a third partner, in fact, the most dominant part­ner, namely, the community at large, to be reck­oned with”.

So, to ensure social justice, industrial relations play a dominant role and thus the impor­tance of industrial relations has been gaining more and more importance. Industrial relations contrib­ute to world peace. Peace in industry is a powerful factor for good international relations.

Class strug­gles and class antagonisms have been responsible for bloody revolutions in the past, threatening world peace. When the entire world is striving for material well-being and when the nations of the world are moving in a planned way for industrial development; industrial relations are naturally drawing more and more attention. The recognition of the human factor in production as the supreme one puts a premium on the importance of industrial relations.

All the world over, the Government of different countries wedded to the policy of doing wel­fare to the people of the country are passing labour legislations with provisions for sufficient scope of ushering in industrial peace through vari­ous reconciliatory devices.

Importance of Industrial Relations with the Need for Industrial Peace

There has been a phenomenal growth in employment, wages, benefits, working conditions, status of the worker, educational facilities etc. with the growth and spread of industry. Moreover, career patterns have also changed widely by providing change for wide varieties of jobs to the working communities. This has been possible only through fast industrial development which, in its turn, depends on industrial peace.

There has been an acute necessity in India especially during the post-independence period, to industrialise her economy in order to tackle the multifarious socio-economic problems. In the words of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru ‘The alternative (to industrialisation) is to remain in a backward, under-developed, poverty-stricken and a weak country. We can’t even retain our freedom without industrial growth.”

Hence, one of the main goals of the Five-Year Plans in India has been rapid industrialisation and more employment in secondary and tertiary industries. It is also viewed that one of the essential steps for building up an economically free and self-sustaining India is, large- scale industrialisation at a rapid and steady growth.

With the attainment of independence and with the launching of planning era, serious and earnest efforts have been made towards rapid economic development of India. India has been in the midst of an ambitious and critically important effort to raise the living standards of her people by an integrated… industrial and economic development plan. The size of industrial labour in India has increased remarkably due to rapid and planned industrial development.

The increase in industrial labour led to the formation and development of trade unions and various social groups. It has also been recognised that management without labour would be sterile and labour without management would be disorganised, ill-equipped and ineffective.

It is realised that the concrete co­operation between labour and management is highly essential to fulfill the individual, organisation and national goals. The First Five Year Plan has clearly demonstrated the fact that, an economy organised for planned production and distribution, aiming at the realisation of social justice and the welfare of masses can function effectively only in an atmosphere of industrial peace.

All these necessitate the maintenance of harmonious industrial relations so as to maintain higher productivity to fulfill the goals of the Five Year Plans in India. The investment in and the scope of industries in India have been growing plan after plan. Much of the success or failure of Indian Five Year Plans would be dependent on the maintenance of harmonious employee-employer relations. Frequent industrial conflicts not only affect the management and labour but also tend to impoverish the community as a whole.

They lead to wastage, class hatred, embitter mutual relations and inflict damages on the progress of the nation. They affect production and national income in an adverse manner. They also clog the progress the nation. They affect production and national income in an adverse manner. They also clog the progress and development of the nation. Further, it is not an exaggeration to say that if we are successful in industry the answer to class-antagonisms and world conflicts becomes easier.

Need for Industrial Peace:

The objectives of maintenance of industrial peace is not only to find out ways and means to solve conflicts or to settle differences but also to secure the unreserved co-operation of and goodwill among different groups in industry with a view to drive their energies and interest towards economically viable, commercially feasible, financially profitable and socially desirable channels.

It also aims at the development of a sense of mutual confidence, dependence and respect and at the same time encouraging them to come to closer to each other for removing misunderstandings, redressing grievances, if any, in a peaceful atmosphere and with open mind and fostering industrial pursuits for mutual benefits and social progress. But the maintenance of congenial industrial relations, particularly in a democratic society like ours is not only a significant task but also a complicated one.

The healthy industrial relations are key to the progress and success.

Their significance may be discussed as under:

  1. Reduction in Industrial Disputes:

Good industrial relations reduce the industrial disputes. Disputes are reflections of the failure of basic human urges or motivations to secure adequate satisfaction or expression which are fully cured by good industrial relations. Strikes, lockouts, go-slow tactics, gherao and grievances are some of the reflections of industrial unrest which do not spring up in an atmosphere of industrial peace. It helps promoting cooperation and increasing production.

  1. Uninterrupted Production:

The most important benefit of industrial relations is that this ensures continuity of production. This means, continuous employment for all from manager to workers. The resources are fully utilised, resulting in the maximum possible production. There is uninterrupted flow of income for all.

Smooth running of an industry is of vital importance for several other industries; to other industries if the products are intermediaries or inputs; to exporters if these are export goods; to consumers and workers, if these are goods of mass consumption.

  1. High Morale:

Good industrial relations improve the morale of the employees. Employees work with great zeal with the feeling in mind that the interest of employer and employees is one and the same, i.e., to increase production. Every worker feels that he is a co-owner of the gains of industry. The employer in his turn must realise that the gains of industry are not for him along but they should be shared equally and generously with his workers.

In other words, complete unity of thought and action is the main achievement of industrial peace. It increases the place of workers in the society and their ego is satisfied. It naturally affects production because mighty cooperative efforts alone can produce great results.

  1. Mental Revolution:

The main object of industrial relation is a complete mental revolution of workers and employees. The industrial peace lies ultimately in a transformed outlook on the part of both. It is the business of leadership in the ranks of workers, employees and Government to work out a new relationship in consonance with a spirit of true democracy.

Both should think themselves as partners of the industry and the role of workers in such a partnership should be recognised. On the other hand, workers must recognise employer’s authority. It will naturally have impact on production because they recognise the interest of each other.

  1. Reduced Wastage:

Good industrial relations are maintained on the basis of cooperation and recognition of each other. It will help increase production. Wastages of man, material and machines are reduced to the minimum and thus national interest is protected.

Thus, it is evident that good industrial relations is the basis of higher production with minimum cost and higher profits. It also results in increased efficiency of workers. New and new projects may be introduced for the welfare of the workers and to promote the morale of the people at work.

An economy organised for planned production and distribution, aiming at the realisation of social justice and welfare of the masses can function effectively only in an atmosphere of industrial peace. If the twin objectives of rapid national development and increased social justice are to be achieved, there must be harmonious relationship between management and labour.