Why Employees Form Unions

Unions have been around in the United States for a long time. Some people support unions and others oppose them. As an employer, if you’ve decided that you would not want unionization of your workers, you should take steps to ensure that they do not unionize. This means understanding the reasons why a group of workers might decide to form a union. We will talk about these reasons in this article.

Overall, if the majority of your employees are not happy with management-with certain aspects of their jobs and work environment-a feeling of general unrest could be spreading among them. This could have been because of one certain issue that they do not like or a collective group of things that they are unhappy about. If you think that this could be the case with your employees, you should immediately take measures to change it. Prevention is always best-so keeping your employees happy before unrest takes hold is of course the ideal solution.

Workers know that union workers are more likely to receive a higher wage as well as better health care and pension benefits. Union representatives will definitely promote this point to non-union workers. Examine your pay scale and benefits package to make sure that you are consistent with your industry and your competitors. It may be time for an adjustment. In tough economic times, all businesses need to trim the fat and cut corners. But you have to do this intelligently, strategically and carefully so as not to take too much away from your employees so that they become disloyal and unproductive – which in the long run ends up costing you the money you were trying to save.

It’s not always just about pay and benefits. You can also make employees happier just by listening to them. If a group of workers does not feel that they have a voice at work-if they believe management is not listening to them or not soliciting their input on their jobs, they will become dissatisfied with the company and possibly begin researching unionization. Unions operate to negotiate on behalf of employees and help ensure fair treatment-help ensure that management does hear the workers concerns about work conditions, pay scale, hours, and other causes for employee complaints. The thing to do is implement a way for your workers to give you input and relay their concerns so that you can address these subjects.

Remember, the National Labor Relations Act protects collective bargaining and encourages workers to exercise that right. As an employer, you cannot attempt to stop the process if your employees are trying to form a union-there can be no retaliation against them if they participate in a union. Forming a union is a protected activity under federal labor law and employers must permit this activity. There are a few exceptions-certain industries or types of employees that do not have the right to form unions. To find out if your employees come under these exceptions, check with the National Labor Relations Board. The NLRB was formed to protect the welfare of workers and businesses against unfair or harmful management and labor practices.

If you are providing good, safe working conditions; giving your workers fair pay; showing concern for their well-being; and allowing them to openly speak to management about issues that affect them; you are much less likely to have your workers form a union then an employer who ignores the wants and needs of the employees and does not respond to their requests. Satisfied, content employees will not only be unlikely to consider unionizing-they will be more productive and profitable for you.