Business Labor Continuity Resources
It’s never easy planning for potential labor interruptions, but we have put together a list of “need to know” information for creating a business continuity plan. These strike staffing resources can help you build a better understanding of what challenges you could face and how we can best collaborate to create the unique solution you need.
Wildcat strike – a strike that happens at random without formal union authorization or notice.
Sit-down strike – when workers refuse to do their jobs or refuse to leave the workplace.
Work-to-rule – an unconventional tactic in which workers perform their tasks exactly as they are required to (“by the rule”) but no better. For example, workers might follow union work rules in such a way that it impedes their productivity, or they might refuse to work overtime. Such strikes may in some cases be a form of “partial strike” or “slowdown.”
Slowdown – union workers decrease productivity because the union contract expiration is approaching and negotiations are not going well.
Sick-out – the union tells everyone in a specific department to all call in sick on the same day, forcing operations to temporarily shut down.
Increased reporting – increased reporting of incidents, violations, OSHA claims, and worker’s compensation claims.
A business continuity plan from Paramount ensures every company we partner with is prepared for each of these situations and is comfortable negotiating from a position of strength.
Business Continuity Plan
Business continuity plans (BCP) are customized guides created for a specific labor disruption like relocation, natural crisis, or strike. These BCPs are produced by businesses and governments to prepare for any situation.
Cross-docking allows companies to employ an “out-of-sight, out-of-mind” mentality by unloading cargo from an inbound trailer, truck, or rail car and then loading the supplies directly onto an outgoing vehicle. This physically separated venue and storage is leased under Paramount to protect the client form picket activities or cargo tampering. This strategy allows Paramount to work with you to:
- Reduce on-site inventory
- Eradicate issues stemming from union suppliers refusing to cross picket lines
- Deliver raw materials and finished product as well as remove waste/refuse from the facility
- Lease ahead of time to build and protect existing stock and inventory
Labor relations are the dynamics between management and bargaining units. In the United States, labor relations in the private sector are regulated by the National Labor Relations Act, and overseen by the National Relations Board. Paramount Consulting advises companies to deal with bargaining units from a position of strength.
A lockout is a work stoppage in which an employer does not allow employees to work under the old contract. This is different from a strike, in which employees refuse to work. When only part of a trade union votes to strike, the purpose of a lockout is to put pressure on a union by reducing the number of members who are able to work. For example, if the anticipated strike severely hampers work of non-striking workers, the employer may declare a lockout until the workers end the strike. Another case in which an employer may impose a lockout is to avoid slowdowns or intermittent work stoppages.
Other times, particularly in the United States, a lockout occurs when union membership rejects the company’s final offer at negotiations and offers to return to work under the same conditions of employment that existed under the now-expired contract. In such a case, the lockout is designed to pressure the workers into accepting the terms of the company’s offer.
The term lock-in refers to the practice of physically preventing workers from leaving a workplace. This can be used in certain situations when it may be unsafe to cross a picket line.
A managed workforce is a provisional group of temporary contract workers and coordinators who work for the organization on a non-permanent basis. A managed workforce from Paramount Consulting:
- Saves time and money by utilizing a skilled, certified, and licensed workforce to enable you to reduce training time and start production sooner.
- Brings in experienced on-site project coordinators who work closely with your management and our employees enforcing objectives and ensuring production goals are accomplished efficiently and on schedule.
- Employees are skilled and motivated while reducing inefficiencies associated with tardiness, turnover, retraining, and retention.
Our Playbooks are custom-created for each client and are step-by-step manuals to follow in the event of a labor disruption. A Playbook is a how-to manual for what to do before, during, and after a strike, assigning specific responsibilities to non-union personnel to prepare for potential strike action or other business interruptions, such as a natural disaster. The Paramount Consulting team develops a comprehensive Playbook as a deliverable for business continuity planning.
A strike is a work stoppage caused by the mass refusal of employees to work. A strike usually takes place in response to employee grievances. Most strikes are undertaken by labor unions during collective bargaining and, the objective of collective bargaining is to obtain a contractual agreement between the union and the company. The strike is typically reserved as a threat of last resort during negotiations between the company and the union, which may occur just before, or immediately after, the contract expires. Generally, strikes are rare; most union contracts can be settled without any work disruptions. However, having a step-by-step manual that helps a company and its managers prepare for and respond to a strike is crucial in order to maintain profitability.
Major Types of Strikes
United States labor law draws a distinction, in the case of private sector employers covered by the National Labor Relations Act, between “economic” and “unfair labor practice” strikes.
Economic strike: An employer may not fire, but may permanently replace, workers who engage in a strike over economic issues.
Non-economic ULP Strike: Employers who commit unfair labor practices (ULPs) may not permanently replace employees who strike over ULPs. Employers may utilize Paramount Consulting’s temporary replacement worker services during a ULP strike.
Impasse: Neither side of the bargaining table is willing to negotiate further.
How can we help your business?
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