Book

Consultation at Work

Mark Hall and John Purcell

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199605460
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191746062 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199605460.001.0001
Consultation at Work

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The practice of consultation between senior managers and employee representatives has a long history in British employment relations yet has often been a poor cousin to collective bargaining. Two trends have elevated the importance of consultation. First, the decline in trade union membership and the retreat from collective bargaining in the private sector has meant that consultation is often the only form of collective employee voice available. Second, since the 1970s the European Union (EU) has embarked on programme of legislative support for consultation, most recently in the information and consultation directive of 2002. The United Kingdom's Information and Consultation of Employees (ICE) Regulations implementing the directive became fully operational in 2008. The book charts the meaning and development of consultation in the twentieth century and explores the justifications for the practice. The way EU intervention to promote consultation evolved and changed is analysed with particular attention to the adoption of the ICE directive. The half-hearted response to EU consultation initiatives in Britain is analysed with a critical assessment of UK governments' handling of the issue, employer hostility, and union ambivalence. The take-up and impact of consultation regulations, especially ICE, is assessed and the processes involved in effective consultation explored. The dynamics of consultation are described drawing a contrast between ‘active’ consultation, and more limited consultation used as a means of communication. The UK experience is compared with practices in Europe. Suggestions are made to improve take-up of consultation and changes needed to the EU directive and ICE regulations.

Keywords: consultation; importance; union decline; EU regulation; justifications; ICE; half-hearted response; coverage; practice; EU comparisons; changes needed

Book.  232 pages. 

Subjects: Human Resource Management

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Table of Contents

Justifications for Consultation in Consultation at Work

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The Practice of Consultation in Consultation at Work

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The Dynamics of Consultation in Consultation at Work

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The Future of Consultation in Consultation at Work

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