The involvement of employees in the process of implementing the technology and brining in change is one of the crucial one because employees not only understand the processes well but also can lead to better implementation of technology because of their ability to under the processes in better way. Management of change has been one of the most challenging tasks for management because it not involves management of processes but individuals also. Unions being the part of the modern organizations often seem to resist the technological changes mainly due to skill obsolete created by technology.
The existing research focused on finding the employee relationship in relation to the technological change and how the unions, as institutional mechanism can interfere into such process of change based on their explicit mandate of collective bargaining in favor of employees. The issue of change has further been analyzed from the perspective of the social context for technology adaptation. However, one of the important aspects of such change is the fact that if such technological changes are brought in for making downsizing than the overall industrial environment of the organization may further worsen due to resistance to change from Union.
(Liker, Haddad, & Karlin, 1999). Liker, Haddad and Karlin is also of the view that the unions’s response also largely based on the level of participation into the technological implementation i. e. if the tehcnologica implimentation is done with larger degree of participation for the employees into the implementation process. Studies have also indicated that the trade liberalization coupled with adoption of labor saving technology can greatly increase the opposition of unions towards technological change. (Lommerud, Meland, & Straume, 2005).
Further, this resistence to technological change has been witnessed more in those countries which are technologically more advanced as compared to those countries which are lagging behing in technological innovation. Unions, in a bid to respond to such technological changes are also seems to take control of the new groups of strategic workers who come into due to technological changes therefore the actions and behaviors of unions can easily be catogerized into pre and post implementation technological change periods. (Deery, 1983).
Recent literature however also indicates the relationship between technology and the work is dependent on certain contingenet factors and as such the change process and its outcome are interliked with each other. (Liker, Haddad, & Karlin, 1999). Within this perspective, unions often tend to view technological change in more of a threat to job security of the employees rather than viewing the impact of that technology on the overall productivity of the organization. Recommendations and suggestions One of the most important steps in this regard is to improve upon the participation of the employees including the union members.
Though, there is no study which has basically focused on the reduction of collective bargaining power of Unions due to implementation of new technology however, still if the participation in increased, unions would have lesser moral ground to protest or resist to such change. Further, research has suggested that with the technology change, new groups of employees emerge therefore unions rather than resisting the change may focus on the new group of strategic works to at least retain their collective bargaining power despite the implementation of new and more robust technologies catering the future needs of the organizations.
1. Deery, S. (1983). The Impact of Technological Change on Union Structure. Journal of Industrial Relations, , 25 (4), 399-414. 2. Liker, J. K. , Haddad, C. J. , & Karlin, J. (1999). Perspectives on Technology and Work Organization. Annual Review of Sociology, , 25, 575-596. 3. Lommerud, K. E. , Meland, F. , & Straume, ,. O. (2005). Globalization and Union Opposition to Technological Change. Retrieved Feb 25, 2009, from http://ideas. repec. org: http://ideas. repec. org/p/cpr/ceprdp/4836. html