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COLLECTIVE BARGAINING PROCESS Learning Objectives *Stages in the collective bargaining process *Key aspects of the initiation of bargaining *Rapport stage of bargaining *Importance of parties coming to the table prepared to explain and justify their demands *Creation of a positive atmosphere at the bargaining table *Consolidation stage of collective bargaining *Relationship between bargaining on economic and noneconomic items *Culmination stage of collective bargaining *Importance to both labor and management of trying to reach an agreement in negotiations rather than resorting to any type of impasse procedure *Communications and strategic aspects of collective bargaining INTRODUCTION Whether we realize it or not, we all have experience with bargaining; it is an integral part of our daily lives both at home and at work. Some examples include bargaining between spouses (over whose career will take precedence if one of them is offered a good job in another location, over vacation timing and priorities, and over the division of labor in child care and in performing domestic chores); with a boss (about goal setting, performance evaluation, compensation, and work assignments); with an antique dealer (about the price of a desired purchase); with members of religious or social committees (about the mission and resources to be allocated for various purposes). In the labor relations subsystem, similar types of bargaining occur in many arenas. However, the focal point of this treatment is on collective bargaining. This process differs from other types of bargaining in several significant respects. It is an institutionalized process; certain behaviors are regulated by law and by the rulings of courts and administrative agencies. A prerequisite for this process is that workers are organized into a union, which then acts as the exclusive bargaining unit in their dealings with an employer. The scope of the process includes wages, hours, and working conditions, except in the federal sector where wages are a nonnegotiable issue. The purpose of the process is to provide a means for determining the terms and conditions of employment for a specified period of time. Thus, all the parties must come to the table prepared to discuss all of the issues that concern them and are covered by the scope of bargaining. Nevertheless, a contract is not expected to cover every situation that may arise in the workplace during the term of the contract, since situations may arise that neither party could have anticipated. Once a contract is in place, however, there should be a reasonable expectation of stability, thus precluding the need for continuous bargaining during the life of the agreement. The term
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This note was uploaded on 02/26/2012 for the course MGMT 3680 taught by Professor Harrywater during the Winter '12 term at CSU East Bay.

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