INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS CONCEPT, HEALTH AND SAFTEY BY PRANAV KUMAR OJHA MBA 2nd SEMESTER MONIRBA,UNIVERSITY OF ALLAHABAD
Concept of Industrial relations• Industrial relations has very wide meaning. In its wider sense, the concept includes the relationship between employer and employee in the course of the running of the industry, and may cover the areas of production, quality control , team work and motivation. Industrial relation primarily stands for the relationship between management and workmen in industry, which may stem directly from trade union- management relationship leading to either industrial peace and harmony or industrial strife.
Definition of Industrial relations• Industrial relations deal with either the relationships between the state and the employers and workers organizations or the other relations between the occupational organizations themselves. - The International Labour Organization• Whole field of relationship that exists because of the necessary collaboration of men and women in the employment process of an industry. - Dale Yoder
Need/Objectives of Industrial Relations• To Sustain and Maintain Industrial Peace.• To Minimize Industrial Conflicts.• To Create Goodwill and Trust.• To Ensure Discipline in the Organization.
HEALTHHealth as defined by World HealthOrganization (WHO), it is a "State ofcomplete physical, mental, andsocial well being, and not merelythe absence of disease or infirmity."Health is a dynamic condition resulting froma bodys constant adjustment and adaptationin response to stresses and changes in theenvironment for maintaining an innerequilibrium called homeostasis. -www.businessdictionary.com
We can examine employee healthfrom following angles –1)Physical Health2)Mental Health
1)Physical Health –The overall condition of aliving organism at a given time.The soundness of the body.Freedom from disease orabnormality.The environmental forces canattack the body or the personmay have genetic malfunctionsto generate the disease.
Physical health can be affected by several causes shown below - Health Hazards CausesLung Cancer Coke oven emissions, asbestos, cigarette smoke.White Lung Disease AsbestosBlack Lung Disease Coal dustBrown Lung Disease Cotton DustLeukemia Benzene, Radiation.Cancer Asbestos, radiation, Vinyl chloride, coke oven emissions.Sterility Radiations
We can examine employee health fromfollowing angles –1)Physical Health2)Mental Health
2) Mental Health –Mental health includes emotional andpsychological health. In resent years, mental health ofemployees, particularly that ofexecutives, has engaged the attention ofemployers. There are 3 reasons for this –(i) Mental breakdowns are common in modern days because of pressures and tensions.(ii) Mental disturbances of various types result in reduced productivity and lower profits for the organization.(iii) Mental illness takes its toll through alcoholism, high employee turnover, and poor human relationships.Mental Health services
A mental health serviceis generally rendered inthe following ways –1) Psychiatric counseling.2) Education of company personnel in the nature and the importance of mental health.3) Development and maintenance of an effective human relations program.
We can examine employee healthfrom following angles –1)Physical Health2)Mental Health
Work Stress –An individual’s response to adisturbing factor in theenvironment.The consequences of suchreactions.Stress is mostly understood to benegative.Where stress brings outsomething better from anindividual, it is called eustress.
What is NOT Stress ? Stress is not simply anxietyof nervous tension. Stress need not be alwaysdamaging. Stress is not always due tooverwork. Stress cannot be avoided. The body has a limitedcapacity to respond.
The Stress ExperienceNot all individualsexperience stress withthe same intensity. Some people over-react to stressors and gethighly stressed. Others have thestamina, endurance andcomposure to cope withany stressors.
Experiences of stressdepends on –(i) The person’s perception of the situation.(ii) The person’s past experience.(iii)The presence or absence of social support, and(iv)Individual differences with regard to stress reactions.
Types of Stressors – Individual-levelStressors. Group-levelStressors. OrganizationalStressors. Extra organizationalStressors.
Signs of Stress Physical Emotional Mental Signs Relational Spiritual Behavioral Signs Signs Signs Signs SignsAppetite Bad temper Lacking humor Isolation A feeling of Pacingchanges emptinessHeadaches Anxiety Dull senses Defensive Apathy SwearingFatigue Nightmares Lethargy Intolerance Inability to Substance forgive abuseInsomnia Irritability Boredom Resentment Cynicism Nail bitingIndigestion Depression Indecisiveness Loneliness Loss of Slumped direction postureCold Frustration Forgetfulness Nagging Doubt RestlessnessWeight Over Poor Lower sex Need to Risk aversionchange sensitivity concentration drive prove selfTeeth Mood swings Personality Aggression Negative Eatinggrinding changes outlook disordersTension Fearfulness Stuck in past Abuse Gloom Headaches
Stress Management – This may becategorized as(i) Individual Strategies(ii)Organizational Strategies
Alcoholism, Smoking and Drug Abuse – Alcoholism and Smoking areserious and widespread problems. It doesnot strike any particular group – this strikesfrom the janitor to the general manager. Organizations employ 3 techniques totackle this problem – First is disciplining the addictedemployee. Where disciplining fails, theemployee is discharged. Second is in-house counseling by theHR department, the company doctor or byimmediate supervisor. Finally, companies use outsideagencies, psychiatrists clinics to deal withthe problem.
Drug abuse is a resentphenomenon and is a seriousone. Drug abuse is moreevident among youngemployees and is found acrossall job levels. Employees whoare drug addicts are oftenmuch more difficult to detectthan alcoholics. Previous techniques areused in this case also.
SAFETY Safety refers to the absence of accidents.Stated differently, safety refers to theprotection of workers from the danger ofaccidents. - K Aswathappa Relative freedom from danger, risk, orthreat of harm, injury, or loss to personneland/or property, whether causeddeliberately or by accident. -www.businessdictionary.com
NEED FOR SAFETYCost saving – If the safety measures are notapplied than the accident may result intofollowing costs-1) Direct cost- It may be in the form of compensation payable to the dependents of victim if the accident is fatal, and medical expenses incurred in treating the patient if the accident is non fatal.2) Indirect cost – It includes loss on account of down time of operators , slowed up production rate of other workers, materials spoiled and labor for cleaning, and damages to equipment.
Safety measures also affect in thefollowing ways-Increased ProductivityMoralLegal
Safety ProgramSafety program deals with the prevention ofaccidents and with minimizing the resultingloss and damages to person and property. Fivebasic principles must govern the safetyprogram of an organization these are :-1) Industrial accidents resulting from a multiplicity of factors must be traced to their root causes.2) The most important function of safety program is to identify potential hazards, provide effective safety facilities and equipment and to take prompt remedial action.
3) The safety policies should be determined by top level management and it must be continuously involved in monitoring safety performance and in ensuring that corrective action is taken when necessary.4) The management and supervision must be made fully accountable for safety performance in the working areas they control.5) All employees should be given through training in safety methods of work and they should receive continuing education and guidance on eliminating safety hazards and prevention of accidents
A safety program generally consistsof six elements :- Development of Safety Policy Organization Strategic for Safety Choices Analysis ofEvaluation of CausesEffectiveness for Accidents Implementation of the Program
Safety program can be dividedinto four parts-1. Strategic Choices2. Safety Policy3. Organization for Safety4. Causes, Extent and Remedies for Accidents
TYPE OF ACCIDENTS Accident Internal External Major MinorFatal Disability Temporary Permanent Partial Total Partial Total
Extent of Accidents – It isestimated that 1.4 Millionworkers in India, five or seventimes more than in Japan,U.K and U.S. are exposed toaccidents. The problem ismuch more severe becausethere are thousands ofunregistered industrialaccidents, most of them smalland tiny, which pose a majorthreat to the workers and thecommunity.
Remedies - The method and devices for theprevention of accidents are now available inplenty. There are certain principles whichenables the management to understand thecauses and consequences of accidents and tointroduce suitable safety devices. Theprinciples are –1) The occurrence of an injury invariably results from a complete sequence of factors, the last one of these being accident itself.2) The unsafe act of employees are responsible for a majority of accidents.3) The employee who suffers a disability/injury caused by an unsafe act has an average of over 300 narrow escapes from serious injury that might have resulted from the very same unsafe act.
4) The method most valued in accident prevention are analogous to the methods required for the control of quality, cost and quantity of production.5) The supervisor is the key person in industrial accident prevention.6) Safety should be driven internally, not externally.7) Do not count on common sense for safety improvement.8) Safety incentive programs should focus on process rather than outcomes .9) When people feel empowered, their safe behavior spreads to other situations.
Training is Safety –•Systematic training of industrialemployees is necessary if they areto do their jobs efficiently andsafely.•Training practice will be foundto vary widely from company tocompany and the difference willbe influenced by the size ofcompany, the types of jobsperformed, and awareness of themanagement regarding theimportance of training.
Implementing the Policy – Forimplementing the policy the programmemust cover –•Procedures for reporting accidents,hazards, fire precautions, first aid.•Arrangements for instructing workersabout safe working methods and fortraining employees in safety matters.•Special rules for work done at a height,in confined spaces, on certain electricalequipment or unguarded machinery.
Implementing the Policy (cont…)–•The maintenance of equipment and the provisionof proper inspection and testing arrangements.•General rules on safe working habits.•Special rules for internal transport drivers.•Arrangement for checking new machinery andmaterials.•Safety inspection.•The provision of personal protectiveequipment, and rules as to its use.•Suggestions on safety matters.
Conclusion Industrial relations is an outcome of employer-employee relationship in an organization which facilitates harmonious relationships in an organization by setting a framework for the management and the employees. It is based on mutual compromise and adjustment, for the benefit of both the parties involved.
References Human Resource Management – KAswathappa Managing Human Resource-Wayne F.Cascio Human Resource Management-GaryDessler and Biju Varkkey www.businessdictionary.com
(ii)Organizational Strategies – Organizations have been developing and implementing stress-reduction strategies. Organizational strategies often include - Improvement in the physical work environment. Job redesign to eliminate stressors. Changes in workloads and deadlines. Changes in work schedules, more flexible working hours. Various fitness programs are adopted.
(i) Individual Strategies – The first step in managing stress is to understand that the individual is exposed to stressors. We cannot manage stress unless we know what causes stress and how these causes are affecting us.Individual strategies to cope up with stress includes - Muscle Relaxation Biofeedback Meditation Cognitive Restructuring Time Management
1) Strategic Choices – Some of the strategic choices are :- 1.1 Managers must determine the level of protection the organization will provide for employees. 1.2 Managers can decide whether a safety program will be formal or informal. 1.3 Managers can also be proactive or reactive in developing procedures or plans with respect to employee safety. 1.4 Managers can decide to use the safety of workers as a marketing tool for the organization.
2) Safety Policy – Safety policy specifies the firm’s goals and designations the responsibilities and authority for their achievement. Specifically, a safety policy must contain a declaration of the organizations intent and the means by which the intent is to be realized.
3) Organization for Safety – Companies constitute safety committees which are, composed of employees from across the organization. Typically, safety committees serve in advisory capacities and are responsible for such tasks as reviewing safety procedures, making recommendations for eliminating specific safety and health hazards, investigating accidents, fielding safety- related complaints from employees and monitoring statutory compliances.
4. Causes, Extent and Remedies for Accidents –Causes - Causes are of two types.Unsafe Acts of Persons Unsafe Mechanical or Physical Condition1. Operating without clearance, failure to 1. Inadequately guarded, guards of improperheed warning. height, strength, mesh, etc2. Operating or Working at an unsafe speed 2. Unguarded, absence of required guards.3. Making safety device inoperative. 3. Defective, rough, sharp, slippery, decayed, cracked, etc4.Using equipments unsafely. 4. Unsafely designed machines, tools, etc..5. Unsafe loading, placing, mixing, 5. Unsafely arranged, poor housekeeping,combining, etc. congestion, blocked exits, etc6. Taking an unsafe position or posture. 6. Inadequately lighted, sources of glare, etc7. Working on moving or dangerous 7. Inadequately ventilated, impure oilequipment. source, etc8. Distracting, teasing, abusing, etc 8. Unsafely clothed, no goggles, glares or masks, high heels etc9. Failure to use attire or personal 9. Unsafe process, mechanical, chemical,protective devices. electrical, nuclear, etc
Increased Productivity- Safetypromotes productivity becauseemployee in safe plants candevote more time on improvingthe quality and quantity of theiroutput and spend less timeworrying about their safety andwell being.
Moral – Safety is important onhuman grounds too. Managers mustundertake accident preventionmeasures to minimize the pain andsuffering the injured worker andhis/her family is often exposed to as aresult of the accident.
Legal – There are legal reasons too for undertakingsafety measures. There are laws covering occupationalhealth and safety, and penalties for non compliancehave become quite severe. The responsibility extendsto the safety and health of surrounding community,too. The supreme court held : “ An enterprise which is engaged in ahazardous or inherently dangerous industry whichposes a potential threat to the health and safety of thepersons working in the factory and industry in thesurrounding areas, owes an absolute and non-degradable duty to the community to ensure that noharm results to anyone on account of the hazardousor inherently dangerous nature.”