How can you get a job as an Industrial Relations Executive?

Industrial Relations, Industrial relations executives roles, and responsibility and how can you get a job as an industrial relations executive?  (A job opportunity is mentioned at the end of this article)

Industrial relations is a very vast field and the scope of this article is limited to a brief of industrial relations and the role and responsibility of industrial relations officers/ executives/ managers in a company/ organization and the skill set required to get this type of job done.

Industrial Relations:

As the name itself implies Industrial Relations comprises of two parts, Industry and relations. Where industry ∝ (proportional to) productivity and the relation is linked to the interaction between humans associated with the industry.

So for productivity specifically continuous uninterrupted productivity, the relations between every stack holder i.e. employer, employee, workers, workmen, customer, government, community, employers, and unions, etc.  Is the industrial relations.

In a nutshell, Industrial relations are basically the interactions between employers, employees and the government, and the institutions and associations through which such interactions are mediated.

According to Scott, Clothier, and Spiegel (1977)[1], the objectives of industrial relations practices, is to get maximum individual development, desirable working relationships between employers and employees, employees and employees, and to affect the molding of human resources as compared with physical resources.

The nature of industrial relations is changing in the manner that some industry experts believe that ‘academic-industrial relations is now outdated; either the problems of the  “human factor”  in work have all been solved,  or they are better addressed by new approaches such as “human resource management” (HRM) or “organizational behavior” (OB)’.  

But this approach is much relevant to developed nations not at all for developing economies like India where 50-60% of the population is still have to work hard to fulfill their survival needs.

IR plays a significant role in today’s working scenario where the harmonious relationship between the employers and employees is needed to have an uninterrupted production.

The Industrial Relations mainly cover the following:

  • Regulatory body to resolve industrial disputes.
  • Collective Bargaining.
  • The role of management, unions, and government.
  • Labor Legislation
  • Worker’s Grievance Redressal system.
  • Disciplinary policy and practice.
  • Industrial Relations Training.

The Scope of IR:

  1. Labour relations, i.e., relations between labor unions and management.
  2. Employer-employee relations i.e. relations between management and employees.
  3. The role of various parties’ viz., employers, employees, and state in maintaining industrial relations.
  4. The mechanism of handling conflicts between employers and employees, if any conflicts arise.

The Industrial relations officer’s key responsibility is to cover the scope of IR. Conflicts between different stack holders in any organization are inevitable and between the employee and employer, it’s very common. Usually, the industrial relationship officers/managers hired to act as liaisons between the worker’s unions and employers/management. The job positions, opportunity, growth, and salary depends on the

The difference between Human resource officer and industrial relations officer:

Industrial relations officers also referred to as labor relations or welfare officers, are valuable members of the human resource (HR) department but are not to be confused with human resource officers.

Industrial relations are the relations between employers and employees or employer and employer. They deal with issues like regulations, grievances and compliances, control over work structures i.e. shift hours and wages linked to that, risk prevention, collective bargaining, industrial security, and similar issues.

Whereas HR officers are basically linked to recruiting, hiring, firing, retention, attrition management, job analysis, compensation and benefits, performance management, appraisals, salary increment, etc.

There are people who also believe ‘academic-industrial relations is now outdated; either the problems of the  “human factor”  in work have all been solved,  or they are better addressed by new approaches such as “human resource management” (HRM) or “organizational behavior” (OB)’.

Job Duties of Industrial Relations Officers:

Industrial relations experts prepare and distribute information for management to be used during the collective bargaining process. Industrial relations offices should be knowledgeable in bargaining trends, salary data, economics, and labor laws.

This knowledge helps them to act as a liaison between employees, employee unions, and management.

Industrial relations officers are an interpreter and adviser on employee’s contract with the employer on issues such as medical benefits, salaries wages, overtime wages, working hours, safety norms, pension, grievances, etc.

The conflict between employees and employers when converts to a lawsuit are painful for both parties, it can be costly to the company and also can affect employee benefits. Here the role of IR officers are very important as a liaison between the two and they usually hired for

  • Negotiations of bargaining deals between union and management
  • To develop labor policies
  • Handling grievance procedures
  • To manage dispute resolutions involving stack holders like unions, management, employees or government agencies, etc.
  • Ensuring HR staff is knowledgeable about union contract compliance
  • Advising management on contract negotiations and similar management-union
  • Heading monthly labor-management meetings
  • Creating and revising union contracts
  • Preparing documentation regarding labor relations

Qualifications and key skills for IR officers:

Qualification to opt for this role depends on the organization. In India mostly the person should have a bachelors/master degree in human resources/industrial relations/labor laws (MBA/BBA/PGDBM in HR)

Or Bachelor or master degree in social works (MSW/BSW)

Apart from the education and work experience is in this job career, candidates applying for the job must also possess certain competencies and qualities. These include the following.

  • Good oral communication skills, especially in local languages to communicate in a better way with laborers. 
  • Good written skills as well in English, Hindi/or any state language. It’s very important as notices/circulars have to be written very clearly as they are officials’ records for employees, employers,s and the government institutions too.
  • Good negotiation, convincing, and mediation skills
  • Good leadership skills and smart team contribution skills
  • An eye for detail
  • A very good understanding of labor relations needs as related to that specific company
  • Solid background in labor relations between private and public sectors
  • Excellent understanding of local issues, caste, creed, and social structure
  • A problem-solving attitude
  • Good listening skills

We are looking for an IR person at sr./officer level:

  1.  Should have done MSW/BSW with 2-5 years’ experience, within the age 30 years.
  2. Strong in drafting Hindi letters (Hindi typing expert not a user of google translator).
  3.  With experience in handling Unions in any manufacturing unit.
  4. With the salary expectation within INR 4.5 LPA
  5. Ready to work at Noida (Delhi-NCR)
  6. Please share your CV at [email protected] with the subject line “Industrial Relations officer| Noida”

You may also want to check:

Current Education System and governing legislation in India

Job security in India vs COVID 19 Corona Virus

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