Employee voice & Trade unionism

Essay by amigogoUniversity, Bachelor'sB, February 2009

download word file, 9 pages 3.0


Within the field of industrial relationship, there is this labour relationship between the management and its workers, particularly the groups of workers represented by a trade union. Labor relationship can be seen on many levels, like the regional level or the national level. The distribution of power among these levels can shape the way an economy functions significantly. (Salamon 2000)

Governments set the framework for labor relations through legislation and regulation. Employment laws usually cover issues such as wrongful dismissal or minimum wages. Such as in Singapore, there are Industrial Relations Act and Trade Unions Act to maintain the peace and harmony in the industrial environment. (Tan 2007)

As the world continues to advance and organizations evolving to keep up with the changing trends, there is a growing interest in the conception of employee voice, both from those desiring better systems of employee representation and seeking higher levels of organizational performance.

(Hall et al)


Voice is commonly viewed as the key ingredient in the creation of organizational commitment. (Walton 1985) Perceptions of 'fair and independent voice' seem to be linked to the existence of a recognized union and trade union representation on a formal joint consultative committee. (Millward et al 2000)

'Voice' mechanism within the organization and its workforce has both a consensual and conflictual effects. On one hand, participation could lead to beneficial impact on quality and productivity while on the other hand it could make matter worse when it is wrongly represented. Trade unions are commonly seen as the best agents to provide voice as they were independent and would reduce exit. (Freeman & Medoff 1984) Next, we shall look into how employee voice affects the organization.

Employee Voice

The term employee voice can be viewed as a useful conceptualization to examine both employer goals and...