Negotiation is a friendly term and it offers option for settlement on existing disputes between parties. Negotiation is more than just a formal bargaining process; it is part of our everyday life. Rackham (1989) defines it as an attempt by two or more parties to reach an agreement when the following three conditions present: 1. both parties can vary the terms 2. The resource is scarce 3. Agreement and conflict exist simultaneously (p. 143).
Negotiation is usually employed as means of peaceful settlement of disputes relying more on the discussion of the issues concerned. It means that discussions of the issues are the essential element in negotiation. Currently, there has been a negotiation between union member employees and the hospital management regarding Collective Bargaining Agreement. The issues raised were the following, salary adjustments, unreasonable work rules and the quality of patient care.
Employees union is recognized as part of the workers right under article 123 of the constitution and article 357 of the Federal Labor Law and therefore, employees are entitled to negotiate a better working condition, justifiable compensation, and what ever they deemed as their rights as provided for in the constitution. The situation at the hospital concerning employee-employer relationship was worsening in view of the employee’s dissatisfaction with their compensation, the unreasonable work rules implemented by the management and the quality of the patients care afforded to patients.
To avoid the situation getting even worse, union members decided to sit with the management to talk about the problems. Union employees represented by their officers proposed collective bargaining initiatives defining the wages and pertinent benefits, and regarding the unreasonable work rules imposed by the company for strictly compliance of all employees, and initiated negotiations with the management regarding the issues concerns. Analysis of the situation Union members and all employees of the hospital deserve a better working condition which includes justifiable compensation, and an acceptable working atmosphere.
They had long endured their situation and they cannot bear anymore further in action of the hospital management on their situation. The employees are ready to resort to radical option in case their situation will not improve in the coming weeks. However, the management seemed to be unmoved by the employees’ threatening demand. Under the existing situation, the best means to settle the issues between the management and the employees is by negotiating terms that would be acceptable to both sides.
The National Labor Relations Act provides that health care workers “could form a collective bargaining unit and have say in rules that affected their jobs” (McEchen & Keogh 2006, p. 163). In other words, the hospital employees have the right to initiates negotiation on issues affecting their rights. In the context of the definition of negotiation above, negotiation is ‘done when there are not enough resources’. Given this argument, it appears that the hospital is not providing justifiable compensation because they don’t have enough money to give.
However the employees’ union officers must propose a negotiation with the management regarding the welfare of both the employees and patients by addressing both the compensation issue and the existing unreasonable work rules through discussion of the pros and cons of the issues concerned. The union officers must formulate their own demands focus on the three main issues mentioned above, for evaluation of the management and for them to act accordingly. This kind of negotiation could be classified as integrative distribution because it aims for a “win-win” solution to the problem.
The union officers should negotiate with the management about the salary issue in view of the long neglected salary adjustments and the employees’ dissatisfaction of the current compensation afforded by the management. It should be emphasized that they deserved an increase in their pay as well as a working atmosphere that is stress free so the hospital management will find a means to meet their demands in a way that it does not infringe other operational procedure of the hospital.