Free The Ups Strike OF 1996 Win-Lose Negotiation Critical Thinking Sample
The United Parcel Service (UPS) is a US logistic company founded in 1907. The company has grown over the years to become one of today’s largest providers of logistic services. The company deals in parcel delivery and specialized transport in many parts of the world.
The company employed a business strategy of absorbing majorly part-time workers. This was quite attractive to young employees who had other commitments such as studies and family to take care of. The remuneration for part time employees was based on union-negotiated wages and benefits. Though employees were satisfied with the working conditions, there was little chance for career progress regardless of the time rendered as a part-time employee. The short-term contract workers faced the problem of career stagnancy as their professional lives were not changing.
Both Union negotiators and UPS union agents studied the statutory rights of part-time employees and what the Teamster-UPS contract entailed. They studied the ratios and proportions related to part-time workers against full time employees. Also included was the differences in salaries, retirement fund packages and limited opportunities for full time employment. There were apparent differences in full-time and part-time employment and a major campaign was launched to manifest the imbalance of economic conditions.
A major strike was planned to raise awareness on the exploitation of UPS in their part-time work scheme. They claimed that UPS is cutting costs by avoiding full time contract and other obligations mandated by federal unions in maintaining regular employees. The call for strike was supported by workers both on regional and international organizations. Communication on the planned strike was done through emails and workers were made aware of the cause for which the union would initiate a work-stoppage. This enabled them to save and financially prepare for the strike period. The international labor union also set up funds to augment the union-employees strike fund just in case it is depleted before the long-term negotiations are over.
The union came up with a list of demands which included the creation of fulltime jobs for part-time workers, reduction in the salary gap between fulltime and part-time workers, improvement of work safety conditions and job security. The union rejected UPS concessionary offer of sub-contracting big-rig drivers instead of hiring on a part time status. This meant delimitation of job positions available for advancement of full-time drivers. This counter-bargain was defeated by the union members arguing that the union-UPS contract has provisions that made clear the fact that sub-contracting could only be allowed if the union would consent to it.
Finally, a successful bargaining agreement was entered which included the following provisions.
That 10,000 part-time employees were converted to fulltime employees
That 10,000 job positions reserved for non-union members and contractors could be available for union members
Those union members became eligible to conduct work modified by technological advancements.
In order to reduce the salary gap between part-time and full time employees, salary rate was adjusted from $8.0. to $8.50 and a salary increase that would aggregate a sum of $4.10 an hour were proposed over the unions five-year labor contract with UPS.
Improvement of working conditions by replacing older car fleets with power steering and additional ventilations
Removal of disciplinary action against employees involved in on-the-job accidents and injury
Expansion of maternity and [paternity leave as per the Family and Medical Leave Act
Prohibition of mandatory overtime for all employees
Package car drivers working on holidays are entitled to remuneration of at least eight hours
These are the successful demands that came out of the negotiation between UPS and Teamster Union and ended the strike that caused UPS millions of dollars. The strike lasted for two weeks. By the end of 1996, 142, 000 out of the 182,000 strong workforces had been absorbed on full time basis.
This historic negotiation process displayed the act of careful planning prior to negotiations. The union employees armed themselves well with knowledge and secured public support prior to raising their concerns. The negotiation was able to solve a labor issue as well as come up with the best collective bargaining. The act of negotiation is an important project management strategy. They provide the resources from which the project manager can draw conclusions, ethical considerations and philosophies. It is a guideline for improving business processes in organizations.
The two parties could have resolved to have a way in which they could have partial recruitment of employees on a full-time basis. The human resource management and the management could work on ways in which they could have the process done partially.
Ciel, C. (2011). Negotiations for project manager: Learning from historic cases. Retrieved 2015, from Bright Hub PM: http://www.brighthubpm.com/methods-strategies/106943-negotiation-tips-for-project-managers-learning-from-historic-cases/
Kerzner, H. R. (2013). Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.
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