The scope of employee Welfare cannot be limited, since it differs according to social customs and the degree of industrialization indifferent countries and at different times. They have to be elastic and flexible enough to suit the conditions of the workers, and to include all the essential prerequisites of life and the minimum basic amenities. The laws of every country highlight directions to specific application to the working class, the necessity of securing just and humane conditions of work, for them. However, what these conditions actually imply cannot be specified in rigid terms for all times and situations.
Thus, the subject of Labour Welfare is fairly wide and is not limited to anyone country, region or industry. Writers and institutions have described its scope in different ways and from different angles. The line of demarcation cannot be very precise. But what should be common is that a welfare measure should enhance the working and living conditions of the workers and their families and make their lives better worth living. In other words, Labour Welfare policies should “Enable workers to live a richer and more satisfactory life”.
Labour Welfare aims at the whole development of the person of the working class. The Labour Welfare Policies of any organization should keep in mind the following objectives:
To increase the standard of living of the. Working class: The labourer is more prone to exploitation from the capitalists if there is no standardized way of looking after their welfare.
To make the management feel the employees are satisfied about the work and working conditions.
To reduce the labour problems in the orgnisaton: There are various problems affecting the workers, problems like absenteeism, turnover ratio, indebtedness, alcoholism, etc., which make the labourer further weak both physically and psychologically. Labour Welfare looks forward to helping the labourer to overcome these problems.
To recognize human values Every person has his own personality and needs to be recognized and developed. It is in the hands of the management to shape them and help them grow. The management employs various methods to recognize each one’s worth as an individual and as an asset to the organization.
Labour Welfare helps to foster a sense of responsibiJjty in the industry: A person works both in a group and as an individual. If the person is given responsibility he will act better or else he will be only a slave to the direction of the superiors and will not show any initiative to prove his worth,
Labour Welfare improves industrial relations and reduces industrial disputes: Industrial dispute in any industry is a sign of unsatisfied employees. Labour Welfare measures act as a preventive tool to most of these disputes.
To retain the employees There should be fixed policies: This calls in to prepare the policies, to conduct different training programmes, to have various motivational schemes, to create interest in the job. The employees who feel secure in an organisation, backed by fixed welfare policies have less chance of looking for a job elsewhere.
To show up their positive mind in the work: Positive mind refers to the development of one’s attitudes. This is to change the negative attitude into positive.
To influence over other employees: This means Labour Welfare helps to change one’s personality – presentation skills, communication skills, inter-personal relationships, etc. This is best achieved when their morale is kept high by the different welfare schemes.
To increase the bargaining power of the employees: Bargaining means to systematically extract something from the opponent. The better bargaining power, the better influence on the opponent. Labour welfare measures like formation of works committee, worker’s participation, Trade Union, etc., will surely help them to have better bargaining power.
Many Non statutory welfare schemes may include the following schemes:
Personal Health Care (Regular medical check-ups): Many businesses have facilities for comprehensive safety inspections
Flexi-time: The primary purpose of the flextime program is to provide workers with the ability to work with flexible work schedules. Flexible work schedules are developed by employees and accepted by management to meet business obligations while meeting personal life needs of employees.
Employee support programs: Different assistant programs are structured such as external counseling facilities so that employees or members of their immediate families can get help on various issues.
Harassment Policy: To protect an employee from harassment of any sort, instructions are given for disciplinary action and also for the protection of the employee who has been grieved.
Maternity & Adoption Leave: Workers can take maternity leaves or leaves for adoption. Various businesses have adopted parental leave programs.
Medi-claim insurance plan: This insurance program offers sufficient medical coverage to workers for hospitalization costs due to sickness, illness or accident or pregnancy.
Employee referral scheme: Worker referral scheme is introduced in many organizations to allow workers to refer friends and relatives to the company for jobs.
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The statutory welfare schemes include the following provisions:
Drinking Water: At all the working places safe hygienic drinking water should be provided.
Facilities for sitting: In every organization, especially factories, suitable seating arrangements are to be provided.
First aid appliances: First aid appliances are to be provided and should be readily assessable so that in case of any minor accident initial medication can be provided to the needed employee.
Latrines and Urinals: A sufficient number of latrines and urinals are to be provided in the office and factory premises and are also to be maintained in a neat and clean condition.
Canteen facilities: Cafeteria or canteens are to be provided by the employer so as to provide hygienic and nutritious food to the employees.
Spittoons: In every work place, such as ware houses, store places, in the dock area and office premises spittoons are to be provided in convenient places and same are to be maintained in a hygienic condition.
Lighting: Proper and sufficient lights are to be provided for employees so that they can work safely during the night shifts.
Washing places: Adequate washing places such as bathrooms, wash basins with tap and tap on the stand pipe are provided in the port area in the vicinity of the work places.
Changing rooms: Adequate changing rooms are to be provided for workers to change their cloth in the factory area and office premises. Adequate lockers are also provided to the workers to keep their clothes and belongings.
Rest rooms: Adequate numbers of restrooms are provided to the workers with provisions of water supply, wash basins, toilets, bathrooms, etc.
The Employee Welfare describes “efforts to provide good work-life at the workplace” “Employee welfare is a descriptive concept that encompasses different programs, incentives, and facilities that workers & employers are provided. The employer makes life worth living for workers through such generous fringe benefits.
Welfare includes all that is done to ensure employee comfort and improvement and that goes beyond wages. Social welfare contributes to maintaining employee morality and motivation so that employees can stay longer. The social welfare acts should not only have to be political but in every way. Employee welfare includes monitoring work conditions, building industrial harmony for workers and their families via health infrastructure, industrial relations, disease insurance, and accidents and unemployment.
Employee benefits encompass all of the employer’s acts aimed at delivering such facilities and services to workers, aside from compensation or wages.
Performance, safety, commitment, and happy labor force for the company are the underlying reasoning behind delivering welfare schemes. The goal of providing these facilities is to improve their working lives and to increase their living standards.
This activity comes either through a law formed by the State or through a local tradition or through a collective agreement or at the initiative of the employer:
To make philanthropic and paternalistic sensations known.
To win the loyalty of the employee and to increase his moral standards.
Fight against socialist ideas and unionism.
Strengthening secure jobs, reducing labor income and absenteeism.
Developing workplace performance and productivity.
Save yourself from high surplus taxes.
Goodwill and public relations enhancement.
Reducing the possibility of further government interference.
To increasing the efficacy of recruitment (because these incentives contribute to the work appeal).
Benefits of Employee Welfare
The major benefits of welfare can be summarized as follows:
Provide staff with improved physical and mental health and foster a safe working atmosphere.
Facilities such as accommodation, medical care, and schooling and leisure facilities for the families of staff help raise their living conditions. It allows staff to concentrate more on work and thereby increase productivity.
By having healthcare services, workers provide a stable workforce. Workers are deeply involved in their roles and work with a sense of engagement.
The welfare measures of employees increase organizational productivity and promote sound industrial relations, maintaining industrial peace.
The welfare policies are raising the social evils prevalent among work such as drug abuse, etc.
Principles of Employee Welfare Schemes:
In general, the principles to be followed in establishing a welfare service for employees are:
The service should meet the workers’ real needs. This means that the manager must first determine with active involvement by the employees what the true needs of the employee are.
A cafeteria will be used to manage the operation. Benefits are significantly different due to their variations in sex, age, marital status, the number of children, the nature of the job, and the amount of wages for workers. This is known as the cafeteria Approach. The value method is individualized under such an approach, though procedures and administration can be challenging.
The employer should not take a caring position.
The cost and funding of the operation should be measured in a reasonable manner.
A periodic review of the service should be carried out, and input should be received in a timely manner.
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