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Human Resource Management

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Human Resource Management (MGT501)
Lesson 38
After studying this chapter, students should be able to understand the following:
A. Employee Rights
B. Disciplining Employees
Today's lecture examines employee rights and employee discipline. The concepts of employee rights,
management rights, and the employment-at-will doctrine are discussed.  Some challenges managers
encounter in balancing employee rights with their own rights and responsibilities (duties) are explored.
Employee discipline is discussed, and some suggestions for managing difficult employees are offered.
A. Employee Rights
Employee rights allow them to engage in conduct
protected by laws and social sanctions. Federal and
state governments have enacted laws giving
Discrimination law
employees specific protection in their relationship
with their employer.  The courts have also been
Minimum wage
willing to protect workers from wrongful discharge.
These rights include statutory, contractual, and other
Labor law
Rights to privacy
B. Employee Rights
There are many laws and regulations governing
human resource management that have been created
to help define, maintain, and preserve employee
rights. Discrimination laws essentially give people the right to work without being evaluated on the basis of
non-job-relevant factors such as religion, origins, sex or race. Minimum wage legislation gives people the
right to expect a certain base level of compensation for their work. Labor laws give employees the right to
organize and join a labor union under certain prescribed circumstances. Employee rights allow them to
engage in conduct protected by laws and social sanctions. Federal and state governments have enacted laws
giving employees specific protection in their relationship with their employer. The courts have also been
willing to protect workers from wrongful discharge. These rights include statutory, contractual, and other
a) Statutory Rights
The key statutory rights can be found in laws such
in Civil Rights Acts, the Occupational Safety and
Categories of Employee Rights
Health Act (OSHA), and the National Labor
Relations Act (NLRA). These rights Protect
employees from discrimination, Safe working
conditions, Right to form unions
Statutory Rights
Contractual Rights
Other Rights
b) Contractual Rights
Protection from
Employment contract
Ethical treatment
A written employment contract details the terms
Union contract
Privacy (limited)
Safe working
Implied contracts/
Free speech
of the employment relationship. These contracts
employment policies
usually address such issues as seniority, due
Right to form
process, and wrongful discharge. Besides written
contracts, there are implied contracts. Employee
handbooks, employment policies, and statements
made by an interviewer or manager may be
interpreted by the courts as implied contracts.
Human Resource Management (MGT501)
c) Other Rights
Beyond statutory and contract rights, employees may have rights to ethical treatment, limited free speech,
and limited privacy.
d) Ways Managers and Supervisors Can Influence Their Companies' Climate of
Fairness and Behavior
Take actions that develop trust, such as sharing useful information and making good on
Act consistently so that employees are not surprised by unexpected management actions or
Be truthful and avoid white lies and actions designed to manipulate others by giving a certain (false)
Demonstrate integrity by keeping confidences and showing concern for others.
Meet with employees to discuss and define what is expected of them.
Ensure that employees are treated equitably, giving equivalent rewards for similar performance and
avoiding actual or apparent special treatment of favorites.
Adhere to clear standards that are seen as just and reasonable.
Demonstrate respect toward employees, showing openly that they care about employees and
recognize their strengths and contributions.
e) Management Rights
Management rights are the rights to run the business and to retain any profits generated. In particular, this
includes the right to direct the work force (i.e., to hire employees and set pay levels). Often, these rights are
residual. Residual rights are those remaining that are not affected by contracts or other (i.e., EEO) laws.
f) Employment at Will
It is a common law doctrine stating that employers have the right to hire, fire, demote, or promote
whomever they choose, unless there is a law or contract to the contrary and Employees have the right to
quit and got another job under the same constraints. The employment-at-will rule was adopted in the
nineteenth century. Workers were free to terminate their relationship (employment) for any reason, so the
courts deemed it fair for employers to be able to do the same. Such a rule has stacked the deck in favor of
the employer, giving wrongfully discharged employees little legal recourse. Nevertheless, employment-at-
will is limited in certain situations. These include cases of public policy exceptions, implied contracts, and
lack of good faith and fair dealing.
g) Employee Rights Challenges:
There is a thin line between the rights of employees and the rights of management. Workplace issues such
as random drug testing, electronic monitoring and whistle-blowing highlight this conflict.
a. Random Drug Testing
Companies that use drug tests must address several challenges such as establishing a policy, what to do with
false positives, how to ensure security over urine specimens, and whether alternative tests should be used
(e.g., performance tests).
b. Electronic Testing
Companies attempt to fight various forms of employee theft by electronic monitoring. To use this type of
monitoring successfully, employees should know what devices are being used, employers should create ways
in which monitoring is beneficial to the employees as well, the employer should develop appropriate policies
which are publicized throughout the company.
c. Whistle blowing
Whistle blowing means employees can notify the wrongdoings of the management. While federal employees
who blow the whistle have certain legal protections; private-sector employees are far less protected.
Because employees may decide to blow the whistle on an employer, many companies realize that it is in
Human Resource Management (MGT501)
their best interest to establish a policy on whistle blowing.
C. Disciplining Employees
Employee discipline is a tool that managers use to communicate a need to change behavior. Traditionally,
such discipline is performed by supervisors. But, when teams are used, it may be the team's responsibility.
Two different approaches to discipline are widely used. They include progressive and positive discipline
a.  Progressive Discipline
The most commonly used form of discipline, progressive discipline, consists of a series of management
interventions that gives employees opportunities to correct their behavior before being discharged.
b. Positive Discipline
Encouraging employees to monitor their own behaviors and assume responsibility for their own actions is
called positive discipline.  Management still intervenes, but with counseling sessions as opposed to
Employee Rights
Employee rights allow them to engage in conduct protected by laws and
social sanctions.
Whistle Blowing
A situation in which an employee notifies authorities of wrongdoings in
A procedure that corrects or punishes a subordinate because a rule of
procedure has been violated.
Progressive Discipline
An approach to disciplinary action designed to ensure that the minimum
penalty appropriate to the offense imposed.
Positive Discipline
Encouraging employees to monitor their own behaviors and assume
responsibility for their own actions is called positive discipline
Table of Contents:
  1. INTRODUCTION TO HRM:Growing Importance of HRM, Road Map of the Course
  2. ESSENTIALS OF MANAGEMENT:Concepts and Essential of Management, Managerís Roles
  3. ORGANIZATION AND COMPONENTS OF ORGANIZATION:Open versus Closed Systems, The Hawthorne Studies
  4. PEOPLE AND THEIR BEHAVIOR:Why to work in organizations?, The Goals of Organizational Behavior
  5. INDIVIDUAL VS. GROUP BEHAVIOR:What Are Roles?, Problem solving Team
  6. PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT TO HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT:Records and Administration, Competitive Advantage
  7. HRM IN A CHANGING ENVIRONMENT:Productivity, New Trends at Work Place
  8. How organization Cultivate a Diverse Workforce, STEPS TOWARD MANAGEMENT OF DIVERSITY
  9. FUNCTIONS AND ENVIRONMENT OF HRM:Compensation and Benefits, Safety And Health, Interrelationships of HRM Functions
  10. LINE AND STAFF ASPECTS OF HRM:Authority, Line versus Staff Authority, Staff Manager
  11. LEGAL CONTEXT OF HR DECISIONS:Doing the Right Thing, Affirmative Action, Unintended Consequences
  12. HUMAN RESOURCE PLANNING (HRP):Benefits of HR Planning, Forecasting Human Resource Availability
  13. STRATEGIC PLANNING AND HRIS:HRís Strategic Role, Human Resource Information System, Common HRIS Functions
  14. JOB ANALYSIS:Purposes of the job Analysis, Questions Job Analysis Should Answer
  15. JOB ANALYSIS:Methods of Collecting Job Analysis Information, Observation, Source of Data
  16. JOB ANALYSIS (CONTD.):SURPLUS OF EMPLOYEES FORECASTED, Diversity through Recruiting Efforts
  17. SOURCES OF RECRUITMENT:ALTERNATIVES TO RECRUITMENT, Quantity of the Applicants, Quality of the Applicants
  18. SELECTION:Initial Screening, Advantages of Successful Screening
  19. SELECTION TESTS:Characteristics of Properly Designed Selection Tests, Guidelines for Conducting an Interview
  20. SELECTION PROCESSÖ CONTD:Background Investigations, Physical Exam, Selecting Managers
  21. SOCIALIZATION:Compensation and Benefits, Team Membership, Stages in socialization Process, Training and Development Trends
  22. TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT:Learning, Phases of Training, Why Transfer of Training Fails
  23. MAXIMIZING LEARNING:Following up on Training, Repetition, Feedback, Purposes of T & D
  24. CAREER MANAGEMENT:Individual career planning, Career Planning and Development Methods
  25. PERFORMANCE:Determinants of Job Performance, Why is performance measured?, Performance Management
  28. COMPENSATION SYSTEM:Pay, Job Pricing, Compensation: An Overview, Compensation Surveys
  29. BENEFITS:Total Compensation, Discretionary Benefits (Voluntary), Workplace Flexibility
  30. ROLE OF MONEY IN PERFORMANCE OF EMPLOYEES:Types of Pay-for-Performance Plans, Empower Employees
  31. MOTIVATION:The Motivation Process, Motivational Theories, Challenges of motivating employees
  32. OCCUPATION, HEALTH & SAFETY:Physical Conditions, Accident Investigation, Smoking in The work place
  33. STRESS MANAGEMENT:Symptoms of Stress, Managing Stress,
  34. COMMUNICATION IN ORGANIZATION:Burnout, Social Support at Work & Home, Communication in organization, Meetings
  35. TRADE UNIONS:Collective Bargaining, The HRM Department in a Nonunion Setting, Phases of Labor Relations
  36. CONFLICT AND NEGOTIATION:Transitions in Conflict Thought, Individual Conflict Management Styles
  37. POWER AND POLITICS:Sources of Power, Advantages and Disadvantages of PowerPower and Politics in Context
  38. EMPLOYEE RIGHTS AND DISCIPLINE:Contractual Rights, Management Rights, Disciplining Employees,
  39. DISCIPLINE (CONT...):Factors to Consider when Disciplining, Disciplinary Guidelines, Employee Separations
  40. LEADERSHIP:The Leaderís Behavior, Situational Theories of Leadership, Becoming a Leader
  41. REVISION (LESSON 12-21):Plans, Job Specification, Human resource planning, Selection Process, Corporate Culture
  42. REVISION (LESSON 22-26):Training, Case Study Method, Training, Performance
  43. REVISION (LESSON 27-35):Classification Method, Compensation, Empowerment, Mediation
  44. INTERNATIONAL DIMENSIONS OF HRM:Global Corporation, Type of staff members, Approaches to Global Staffing
  45. CONCLUSION & REVIEW:Strategies for Gaining Competitive Advantage, High-performance Work System