worker participation


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Worker Participation

The policy in which a company allows subordinate employees, usually but not always collectively, to have a say in the management of the company. For example, employees may be represented on a company's board of directors. Likewise, the company's union may negotiate a contract in which union representatives have certain management authority.

worker participation

the involvement of employees in the decision-making processes of the FIRM that extends beyond those decisions implicit in the specific content of the jobs that they do. Worker participation most commonly refers to those processes or activities that occur at the workplace, in particular, the devolution of work planning to work groups or QUALITY CIRCLES.

The term ‘industrial democracy’ is often used as a synonym for worker participation, but industrial democracy in fact denotes power-sharing by the workers with management in corporate decisions decided at higher levels in the organization (that is, up to board of directors level). Whereas worker participation implies the direct involvement of all employees, industrial democracy suggests a system of representation and joint consultation between managers and worker representatives and with worker directors (that is, worker representatives sitting on the board of directors). See TWO-TIER BOARD. Employee share ownership through EMPLOYEE SHARE OWNERSHIP PLANS (ESOP)

can enhance worker participation by providing workers with additional information and commitment as shareholders in the firm.

There is some controversy about the effects of the extension of worker participation upon economic efficiency. At the operational level, worker participation can improve PRODUCTIVITY (output per man) by instilling a greater commitment to, and sense of achievement in, group activities. At the strategic level, major decisions relating to new investment, etc., may be impaired by the involvement of too many vested interests when what is required is a more detached longer-term view of the issues involved.

standards of structure

  1. A large or an appreciable number of suppliers, none of whom dominates the market, or at least as many as scale economies permit.
  2. No artificial barriers to entry.
  3. Moderate and price-sensitive quality differentials.

standards of conduct

  1. Active competition between rival suppliers, avoiding collusive agreements to fix prices, market shares, etc.
  2. No use of exclusionary or coercive tactics (exclusive dealing, refusal to supply, tie-in contracts) aimed at harming rival suppliers.
  3. Sensitivity towards consumers’ demands for product variety.

standards of performance

  1. Minimization of supply costs.
  2. Prices consistent with supply costs, including a ‘fair’ profit return to suppliers in relation to efficiency, risks, investment and innovation.
  3. Avoidance of excessive promotional expenses.
  4. The introduction of new technology and new products.
References in periodicals archive ?
The paragraphs on risk and worker participation are likely to be applicable to all workplaces.
Encourage worker participation in knowledge exchange and social support with peers.
Instead, we have concentrated on practical tribunal reform and supported progressive firms who want worker participation and share ownership.
It is time for action on the right to training, stronger worker participation and an industrial policy agenda promoting innovation and job creation.
Funding for the study is provided by the 1199SEIU Greater New York Worker Participation Fund and the Commonwealth Fund and the Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation that supports independent research on health care issues.
Encourage worker participation in monitoring working conditions and establish an open culture in which workers feel able to report incidents and near-misses.
The largest work stoppage in terms of worker participation in 2005 involved the New York City Metropolitan Transit Authority and the Transit Workers Union, Local 100 and idled 35,000 employees.
Worker participation in 401(k) plans is notoriously low, even for those who have private, taxed savings elsewhere.
Worker participation in occupational health research: theory end practice.
And at the core of this rejection is an innovative strategy of worker participation in management.
Ensure minority and women-owned business and worker participation in the rebuilding efforts;
But the state had constraints of its own, especially as its growing centralization kept departmental and regional officials from promoting worker participation at the level of the firm.