Thursday, February 26, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Also, here is a link to a blog post I wrote for the online version of the Atlanta Journal Constitution on How to Stand out at a Job Fair.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Monday, February 16, 2009
- An executive order that requires employers with federal contracts above $100,000 in value to post a notice in the workplace informing their employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), including the right to join a union. This repealed "Beck" orders that President Bush has put in place.
- A second order applies to federal contractors who provide services to government buildings. Under this new executive order, when a federal agency changes contractors, the new contractor will be required to offer jobs to the non-supervisory employees of its predecessor. This order is designed to try to ensure that when a unionized contractor is replaced, its successor will be obliged under existing labor laws to bargain with the original contractor’s labor union.
- A third order prevents federal contractors from being reimbursed in federal funds for money spent to oppose (or support) union organizing efforts among their employees.
- A fourth executive order, dealing with what are called Project Labor Agreements, requires basically that all covered contractors with contracts of $25 million or more for federal construction contracts (defined as work involving construction, rehabilitation, alteration, conversion, extension, repair or improvement of builds, highways or other real property) use union labor.
All these orders are effective immediately.
So there you have it. Making sure the unions get some payback. And you thought it was all going to be through EFCA and RESPECT. I am suprised the ARRA ("stimulus bill" for you uninformed) does not require that everyone that is going to get a tax cut, tax break, unemployment, workers' comp or any other assistance or money become a union member. MMM.. maybe I should not speak too soon, afterall has anyone really had time to read the 1000+ pages???
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Friday, February 06, 2009
If you have been reading these posts at all, you know by now that the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) contains a provision allowing unions to organize using a method referred to as "card check." Wikipedia defines card check "...as a method of organizing employees into a labor union in which employers enter into an agreement to recognize the unionization of its employees if a majority of employees in a bargaining unit sign authorization forms, or "cards". " What most people do not realize is that the signed "card" does not need to actually be a card, that is a holdover from the days when it actually was a card, back in the days when there was nothing like email and electronic signatures. Many experts feel today that union organization will be done in large part by use of email and to a lesser extent through the use of social media, such as FaceBook, MySpace and Twitter. Their recommendation to employers is to severly restrict the use of email to business only purposes and eliminate access to social media from work computers.
Unfortunately, this butts heads with the increasing trend of (primarily) younger workers using email and social media for personal communication throughout the day. In fact many recruiters are using social media for recruitment purposes. People access and read blogs throughout the day. Web 2.0 use is a mix of work and personal that becomes almost impossible to limit. If you try you may have push back from younger workers who complain that this makes the workplace too stifling, which is the opposite type of workplace you want to have to remain union free.
It will be a fact that unions will use your email system to try to organize workers against you. Expression of interest through an email response may very well count as having "signed the card." So what do you do? You need to educate your workers. Educate them on:
- The company position on remaining union free. Let them know how the company will be harmed economically.
- Educate them on how unions may try to organize them, forewarning them about emails and contacts on social media. Letting them know not to respond to these contacts without first checking out the facts that may be presented.
- Encourage open communication with your employees about the economy, unions and the continued well being of the company.
You can draft tighter non-solicitation policies, which includes the use of email. But it may be difficult to totally control email use. But there is software to monitor email traffic if you want to do so.
I would like to hear from some of you who have email policies that restrict use of email. Please leave a comment and let us know how you do it, monitior it, and how effective that has been.
As a closing note, the card check provision is getting alot of attention. This attention may be a diversion to keep our attention away from the second provision of EFCA, Interest Arbitration and enforced contracts, which is the much BIGGER EVIL of EFCA.