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Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry


Submitted by: Neelam Srivastava (HOD, Fashion at Satyam Fashion Institute, Noida)

Introduction
Apparel manufacturing industry has varied product categories. To manufacture such range of products trained workforce is required. In whole this workforce runs the entire apparel manufacturing from the stage one to final dispatch. Hence, this workforce or employees are the major role players and the relationship of employee with the organisation has always been an important stakeholder. Employees are crucial strategic resource to the organisations success. Employees are the human capitals, an important investment as well as an important asset to the organisation. The growth of the employee also defines the growth of the organisation. Therefore, In order to be productive, the employee organisation relationships can provide long sustainable differentiating edge in global competition of Apparel business. The organisation employee relationship is not always harmonious. For many reasons organisations have layoffs. The paper will meet its objectives through the discussion of various aspects of Human Resource Management on employee relations in the organisation focusing the Apparel Industry. In order to understand better the relations of employee and organisation we will first focus on the impact of layoffs on the organisation and than the measures which has been adopted in other business sectors could be beneficial to apparel organisation also. To find good employees is difficult task and more harder is to replace them. This costs the company both on time and money.

1 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry Impact of Layoffs on the organisation Layoffs create an impact of stress among the workers. They consider themselves as the disposable commodities, results in a disengagement from the company and its objectives. Company slogans that employees are our most important asset sounds hollow, when in tough times a company decides to fire workers. The issue is whether layoffs are among the first responses to difficulties or an action the company takes. In companies where there have been layoffs, there is a tendency that the employee should feel grateful because they are lucky to have a job. Yes, the employees who remain may said to be fortunate to still have a job, but they rarely give this credit to the company. In fact, layoffs develop an environment of insecurity that the next call could be for them. This directly affects the performance of the existing ones and employee in the state of insecurity starts looking for jobs in other companies, especially in those companies that have reputations for stability and considerate treatment of an employee in both good and tough times. The other aspect of the situation is, nothing comes cost-free, not even cost-reduction! The savings from layoffs is somewhere affected by the costs of severance packages, lower performance by stressed and disengaged workers. When the company begins to recover, there will be large costs on recruitment, performance due to inexperience, training and also due to dissatisfied employees leaving for employment elsewhere. In fact, the management should focus on the policies and practices that treat employees as partners as an investment in an ongoing relationship that pays tremendous dividends as loyal, dedicated and experienced workers go above and beyond what their jobs and company requires. Some of the same are discussed here.

2 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry A. The Psychological Contract It has been observed that the psychological contract is becoming an important factor for improving the employee employer relations. The concept of Psychological Contract first emerged in the 1960s by theorists Chris Argyris and Edgar Schein. The Psychological Contract is a representation and understanding between employer and employee in terms of mutual beliefs and informal obligations. It details the practical aspects of the job work and makes the working environment and relationships dynamic. The Psychological Contract focuses on the relationship between an employer and its employees, and defines the mutual expectations, concerns of inputs and outcomes. The Psychological Contract is usually seen from the standpoint or feelings of employees and makes a contract during the recruitment process. The agreement discuses what employee and employer can offer each other. If agreement is settled, it describes the standard form of the details of the employees duties in clear words to be performed on the job. It is basically:
1. 2.

How the employee is treated by the employer, and What the employee puts into the job.

The words 'employees' also mean staff and workforce. B. Development of Multi skills Multi skills mean that an employee having sets of core and soft skills should be able to adapt him easily in any position and job. It is very important to have more than the right skills for continuous growth. Multi Skills helps an employee to get training and re-skilling which in return makes them well groomed professionals. It save their jobs at the time of adversity and layoffs, helps them to shift from boredom of the one job profile. It also helps an employee to showcase the talents in various areas of job function and opens the path for career 3 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry growth and saving on the company cost on selection and recruitment process on smaller projects. Industry and Management experts says, in the current global competitive scenario, uncertainty for the job security is very high, level of competition is increasing and expectations from the organization will be the few challenges that an employee will have to deal with. To work in the given challenging business environment, an employee would also need to have a combination of knowledge and a good grasp of business expertise. Young professionals should be more focused and goal oriented in the early stages of their career and they should learn to analyze and to be more adaptable. C. The need for coordination: Coordination among employees and departments is another important aspect for the sustainable growth and maintaining the employee employer relation. Without coordination a companys left hand will not act in concert with the right hand, causing problems and conflicts. Coordination is required regardless of the type of organizational system it has. In concert of proper mentioned roles and functions that an employee identify with their immediate department or team to act smooth. Here senior managers have to have a cat eye to find a way to group together all of these departments. The organization needs systems to process information and enables communication among people in different levels. Managers can design systems and structures to promote this coordination. The below mentioned are three innovations to increase communication and cooperation. a) Task force b) Project Managers c) Re Engineering d) Cross functional team

4 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry a) Task teams: A task team is generally formed and comprised of experts and is a temporary team or committee designed to solve a short term problem or a particular involving several departments. It is a committee formed on ad hoc basis. Task team members represent their respective departments and share information that enables coordination to assess the situation and then draw the list of problems to solve them on the order of priorities. The task team prepares the number of solutions to pick the best solution to the problem and forwards it to the department which is involved in the formation of the Task team. b) Cross functional teams. It is team formed by the representatives of different departments which may involve bringing result on one common goal. Every member is an expert in the team to handle the particular task involved. The self directed goal oriented team has influenced the decision making in the organizational system. Team members think in terms of working together for the benefit of the whole rather than just for their own department. c) Project managers: A project manager is a person who is responsible for coordinating, delegation, supervision and maintaining the activities of several departments till the completion of a specific project. The distinctive feature of the project manager position is that the person is not a member of one of the departments and should poses strong capabilities to bind the team to achieve desired project outcomes. The project manager manages the project and should have strong negotiation and relationship management skills to ensure timely and effective communication with the project team and with the project stakeholders. d) Re engineering: 5 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry Re engineering are the industrial engineering methods of process analysis, activity costing and value-added measurement to the existing management system. A successful, re engineering process depends on the commitment and cooperation of the employees. Re engineering process demonstrates that only by working together, an improvement in long-term opportunities can be brought. It involves knowing the existing employees and to find conditions that will support the creation of new jobs. It may also imply ceasing some short term jobs for the successful long run goal achievement.

D. Interpersonal Communications: Interpersonal communication is either one on one communication with individuals or among community. It involves exchange of ideas, thoughts, its understanding and interpretation as it is send through various means like, direct conversation, through computers or any other means. Managers of today must develop this skill in order to build relation with the overall workgroup. Working with diverse group of people includes lot of interaction and right way of positive interactions which helps to create right work place climate, right attitude for work, and behaviors. In addition, because interactions occur daily, it is important for managers to have the respect of their employees. If this respect is absent, the supervisor or manager will have a difficult time to accomplish work.

E. Increasing employee engagement Employee engagement is the concept which measures the employee and organisation relations. Employees are said to be engaged when they show a positive attitude towards the organization and express a commitment towards the continuous growth.

Employee engagement in an organisation focuses on: 6 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry 1. Work Culture 2. People focused policies 3. Factors for organisational performance
Perfroma nce

Work Culture

People Focused policies

The picture clearly depicts the relation between performance and engagement, Whereas, the central area shows perfromance and the enagaementof the empoyee.

Increasing employee engagement: An organisation can formulate its policies in the direction to engage employee to the maximum in the following manner. 1. Job variety: If the job requires repetitive tasks, look for ways to introduce variety by rotating duties, changing the areas of responsibility and delivery of services. 2. Regular meetings with employees: Managers and supervisors should be comfortable communicating with their staff, and able to give and receive constructive feedback. 3. Employee consumption: Indulge with employee by providing an open environment to share the calibres and possibilities to judge if the particular is on the right job.

7 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava

Differentiating Edge-Organisation and Employee Relation in Apparel Industry 4. Career advancement/improvement opportunities: In this employees initiated changes in order to reap the bonuses generated by the subsequent cost savings. 5. Quality of working relationships: This includes maintaining the relation with sub ordinates and pace of understanding to persuade the employees to perform at high level.

8 August 2011 Neelam Srivastava