The paper "The Theoretical Assumptions of the Newly Elected Government in Employment Relations " is a great example of a business case study. Over the past decades, it has been the aim of every Australian government to establish good legislation and policies so as to improve the employment relations in the country (Shaw 2001,p. 11). There are two main theories which have been used successively by the Australian government in order to govern employment relations in the country namely pluralist and unitarist theories (McDonald 2000,p. 233). Ideally, it can be noted that the current coalition government has taken a more pluralist approach to employment relations in the country, marking the continuous shift from unitarism to pluralism approach to employment relations in Australia.
The Fair Work Act of 2009 is the main policy document which has been established under the regime of the previous government. Looking at the act, it can be acknowledged that it exhibits various aspects of pluralism, an approach which has both positive and negative impacts on employment relations in the country. From the Fair Work Act 2009, the current coalition government based several arguments in their campaigns.
The following essay will analyze the assumptions made by the newly elected coalition government with respect to employment relations in the country. Key to the campaign promises that the coalition government made during the campaigns was to increase productivity in the country (Peetz 2008, p. 1). However, the means of increasing productivity made several assumptions; many of which would influence the employee relations negatively. One of the major assumptions made is that productivity would be increased if the government involved itself in the negotiations between the employers and the employees.
On this point, it is important to note that the country hade made great developments in industrial relations by the upholding of collective bargaining which is a pluralist employment relations approach (Maconachie & Goodwin 2009,p. 3). Under the fair work 2009, the trade unions were free to negotiate with the employers on behalf of the employees for increase in wages among other employment conditions. Under the collective bargaining clause, a trade union would have to show that they were bargaining in good faith; hence had no hidden agendas in their actions (Australian Council of Trade Unions, 2012, p. 2).
This made the Fair Work Act 2009 to emerge as one of the best policies which had been able to streamline the industrial relations in Australia since it had the interest of the employers and the employee at heart. However, the new coalition government proposes that bargaining between the employer and the employee would only take place if the employee (trade unions) showed that they had taken the consideration of productivity in their actions. This additional clause to the employee relations policy would mean that trade unions do not represent the interests of their employee solely but have to consider the implications of their activities to the productivity of the organization (Berg 2013, p. 1). The assumption of the new coalition government is that by doing so, the productivity of the concerned organizations and the entire country at large would increase (Peetz 2008, p. 1).
However, this would be counterproductive in the long run. On this point, it is important to appreciate that such a move would have a negative impact on employment relations.
For this reason, it is automatic that the action would be counter-productive. The coalition government should appreciate the fact that employee relations policies are meant to improve the relationship between the employers and the employees. In addition to this, the government should acknowledge the fact that such policies are not meant to favor either of the parties.
Australian Council of Trade Unions, 2012. The Fair Work Act; Two Years On, Australian Council of Trade Unions, pp. 1- 47
Berg, C., 2013. A Nanny State of IR Policy is the Liberal Choice, ABC, Retrieved on 23rd September 2013 from http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-27/berg-industrial-relations/4914682
McDonald, J., 2000.thical is the Australia Workplace Relations Act?, pp. 232 – 241
Maconachie, G., and Goodwin, M., 2009. Enforcing minimum labour standards in Australia from 2010 : correcting or compounding problems. In: Labour, Capital and Change – Proceedings of the 23rd Conference of the Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand,
4 – 6 February, Newcastle, Australia.
Peetz, D., 2008. Coalition’s productivity obsession makes for flawed IR policy, Retrieved on 23rd September 2013 from http://theconversation.com/coalitions-productivity-obsession-makes-for-flawed-ir-policy-14145
Shaw, J., 2001. The Future of Australian Industrial Relations. Australian Quarterly, Vol. 73, no. 6, pp. 11-14