Employment Relations

Publications (by Dionne Pohler)

Publications (by Dionne Pohler)

Are Unions Good or Bad for Organizations? The Moderating Role of Management's Response

Employment Relations Unions Strategic HRM Voice

Unions can be good or bad. It depends on management's strategies and response toward its employees and the union.

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Are Unions Good or Bad for Organizations? The Moderating Role of Management's Response

Pohler, D., & Luchak, A. (2015) Are Unions Good or Bad for Organizations? The Moderating Role of Management's Response. British Journal of Industrial Relations, 53(3): 423-459. Read a shorter summary of this research here.

 

Union impact research has been hindered by an underdeveloped conceptualization of management response, contributing to inconclusive empirical findings. Integrating the collective voice/institutional response model with the appropriateness framework, we propose that an employee-focused business strategy is a critical moderating variable in the relationship between union density and organizational outcomes that mitigates the negative effects of unions and enhances the positive effects by sending a clear signal of management's intentions to co-operate. Using a panel dataset of Canadian organizations over six years, we provide empirical evidence to support our arguments.

Unions can be good or bad. It depends on management's strategies and response toward its employees and the union.

2018-01-15 18:34:50

Multinationals' Compliance with Employment Law: An Empirical Assessment Using Administrative Data from Ontario, 2004-2015

Governance Employment Relations Law Public Policy Unions

Do multinational companies comply with the law in a developed country like Canada? Our key findings based on data from Ontario suggest that unions predict compliance across all foreign MNCs, and there are systematic country-of-origin effects on MNC compliance in non-unionized workplaces.

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Multinationals' Compliance with Employment Law: An Empirical Assessment Using Administrative Data from Ontario, 2004-2015

Pohler, D., & Riddell, C. (accepted) Multinationals' compliance with employment law: An empirical assessment using administrative data from Ontario, 2004-2015. Industrial and Labor Relations Review.

Our study contributes new evidence to the literature on MNC behaviors by exploring three related questions: (1) Do MNCs comply with local employment laws in a developed country? (2) To the extent that compliance varies across MNCs, what factors are important in shaping compliance? (3) Is there a “foreignness” effect for MNCs operating in developed countries, and does this effect vary according to country-of-origin and/or union status? To investigate these questions, we compiled unique firm-level administrative data on MNC compliance with regulatory and quasi-regulatory employment practices during mass layoffs in Ontario, Canada. Adopting a research design that uses the behavior of Canadian MNCs as the comparison group, our key findings suggest that unions are a very robust predictor of compliance across all foreign MNCs, and that there are systematic country-of-origin effects on MNC compliance in non-unionized workplaces.

Do multinational companies comply with the law in a developed country like Canada? Our key findings based on data from Ontario suggest that unions predict compliance across all foreign MNCs, and there are systematic country-of-origin effects on MNC compliance in non-unionized workplaces.

2018-01-15 17:27:43

Balancing Efficiency, Equity and Voice: The Impact of Unions and High Involvement Work Practices on Work Outcomes

Employment Relations Unions Strategic HRM Voice

Are HR practices that encourage employee voice and involvement in decision-making, high involvement work practices, substitutes for unions? We propose that unions and high involvement work practices and systems are complements. Greater balance is achieved between efficiency, equity, and voice when good management practices are employed in the presence of unions.

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Balancing Efficiency, Equity and Voice: The Impact of Unions and High Involvement Work Practices on Work Outcomes

Pohler, D., & Luchak, A. (2014) Balancing Efficiency, Equity and Voice: The Impact of Unions and High Involvement Work Practices on Work Outcomes. Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 67(4): 1063-1094. Read a shorter summary of this research here.

Theory and research surrounding employee voice in organizations have often treated high-involvement work practices (HIWPs) as substitutes for unions. Drawing on recent theoretical developments in the field of industrial relations, specifically the collective voice/institutional response model of union impact and research on HIWPs in organizations, the authors propose that these institutions are better seen as complements whereby greater balance is achieved between efficiency, equity, and voice when HIWPs are implemented in the presence of unions. Based on a national sample of Canadian organizations, they find employees covered by a union experience fewer intensification pressures under higher levels of diffusion of HIWPs such that they work less unpaid overtime, have fewer grievances, and take fewer paid sick days. Job satisfaction is maximized under the combination of unions and HIWPs.

Are HR practices that encourage employee voice and involvement in decision-making, high involvement work practices, substitutes for unions? We propose that unions and high involvement work practices and systems are complements. Greater balance is achieved between efficiency, equity, and voice when good management practices are employed in the presence of unions.

2017-01-24 20:32:48

The Missing Employee in Employee Voice Research

Employment Relations Voice Unions

A review of the research on employee voice in the workplace, with associated insights and recommendations for future research.

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The Missing Employee in Employee Voice Research

Pohler, D., & Luchak, A. (2014) The Missing Employee in Employee Voice Research. In Wilkinson, A., Donaghey, J., Dundon, T., & Freeman, R. (eds). The Handbook of Research on Employee Voice. Edward Elgar.

A review of the research on employee voice in the workplace, with associated insights and recommendations for future research.

/storage/files/Pohler_Luchak_bookchapter.pdf
2017-01-24 20:30:12

The Merit of a Points-Based Merit System at the Edwards School of Business

Employment Relations Inequality Unions HR Practices Strategic HRM

A case study of the challenges in implementing a points-based merit system at a business school.

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The Merit of a Points-Based Merit System at the Edwards School of Business

A new faculty member is engaged in a decision-making process surrounding the development of a points-based system designed to allocate merit pay at a business school. The process is forcing her to evaluate how she is structuring the allocation of her work, which is directly affecting her motivation toward coaching a student case competition team. Edwards has historically used a judgment-based approach to the allocation of merit. The case outlines the rationale used in the design of the new points-based system, discusses the potential advantages and disadvantages, and highlights the perspectives of different stakeholders throughout the process, including the union, the faculty, and senior administration. The union is opposed to merit, so has outlined fairly stringent criteria for the awarding of merit in the new collective agreement. Faculty opinion is mixed surrounding merit more generally, and the implementation of a points-based system versus a judgment-based system in particular. Senior university administration is committed to the continuation of the merit system at the university as a tool to reward outstanding performance and to retain star faculty. The individual departments at Edwards are in the midst of finalizing the standards and procedures for allocation of merit-based pay. The protagonist is uncertain about how her department will proceed in the design and allocation of points, and how it will result in her re-allocating her work tasks.

A case study of the challenges in implementing a points-based merit system at a business school.

2017-01-24 20:24:50
Other Publications

Other Publications

Ontario Changing Workplaces Review

Governance Employment Relations Law Public Policy Unions

Find the commissioned research reports and the final government report for the Government of Ontario's recent review of its employment and labour law.

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Ontario Changing Workplaces Review

Government of Ontario: Ontario Changing Workplaces Review.

“A simultaneous review of both Acts is unprecedented in Ontario. The review process requires us to examine academic and inter-jurisdictional research, and solicit feedback from the general public and stakeholders. Since the launch of the review, a substantial amount of work has been completed. We undertook pre-consultation meetings with stakeholders and academics, released the review’s “Guide to Consultations” paper to commence public consultation, commissioned multiple academic research projects to aid in the review process, and met with interested stakeholders. We have held 12 public consultation sessions across the province. We have spoken at eight conferences and meetings to a large cross-section of employers, unions and worker advocates in order to inform them of the issues that are before us and to encourage their participation in the review process. In total, we heard over 200 presentations and received over 300 written submissions from employers, unions, employee advocacy groups, and other interested parties. We have completed our review of these submissions and an overview will be included in our public Interim Report that will outline many of the issues and options for change that we have been asked to consider.” (Changing Workplaces Review Advisors)

Find the commissioned research reports and the final government report for the Government of Ontario's recent review of its employment and labour law.

2017-01-26 03:17:24
Other Valuable information

Other Valuable Information

The five-week college teachers' strike in Ontario was one of the longest labour stoppages in the system's history. Panelists discuss the implications of the strike for different stakeholders.

An Ontario college strike out

The five-week college teachers' strike in Ontario was one of the longest labour stoppages in the system's history. Panelists discuss the implications of the strike for different stakeholders.

2018-04-11
tvo.org 2018-01-15 20:05:25
Governance Employment Relations Law Public Policy Unions An Ontario college strike out 2018-01-15 20:05:25
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