Julie Sinclair is the HR Director for TVS SCS http://www.tvsscs.com
Activity 1:– Draw a mindmap of the UK employee relations expectations and practices
Activity 2:- Draw a mindmap of German employee relations expectations and practices
Activity 3 Develop a table of comparison to illustrate convergence and difference
(N.B. words in activities 1, 2 and 3 do not count in your 600 words)
Activity 4:- Write 600 words to be address to Julie Sinclair:- The question Julie would like addressing is “What challenges do the key Industrial Relations differences between Germany and the UK present?”.
Suggested guidance and enquiries
1. Compare and contrast the differences between works Council versus Trade Union (Activity 1, 2 and 3)
2. Consider the impact and importance of the Works Council versus Trade Union in Germany.
3. Consider the HR practices that are used within a specific sector like the motoring industry. Is there a right way?
4. Do you consider that there is one global HR approach?
5. Do and should HR practitioners be the holder of ethics in an industry that is consumer driven and financially managed?
6. Are there other models and industries we can look to where there is much greater effort being made to address the employment relationship?
To help you contextualise this work Julie was asked the following questions:-
Q 1:- What situation has created the context of why the question is pertinent
A 1:-TVS SCS have recently taken on a contract with General Motors in Germany. They are providing HR support to Transfer of Undertakings Protection of Employment (UK) (TUPE) over existing employees and then offering ongoing HR support.
Q 2:- What has lead you to ask this question regarding TUPE between UK and Germany employees all belonging to the same organisation?
A 2:- There are challenges in Germany dealing with the works council when it comes to employee relations issues in particular relating to terms and conditions. Any changes to terms and conditions, recruitment of new employees, introduction of new working practices have to be approved by the works council. They can have more influence than Trade Unions, in the UK it is the other way around.
Q 3:-What do you consider industrial relationships is in practice?
A 3:- Relationship with the works council and trade union and ongoing communication to the impacted workforce. It is important that we engage with all stakeholders and achieve a positive outcome.
Q 4:- What have been your experiences of the differences in employment relations between UK and Germany?
A 4:- Employment Law in Germany is very different to the UK and in addition we have the language barrier.
Q 5:- What expectations do you have from the question set out?
A 5:- I would expect to see an overview of the differences between working with TU/Works Council in Germany versus the UK and how this can impact on communication between management and the employees. Also the challenge of a UK firm taking over a German operation and the challenges an external HR consulting practice could face supporting General Motors through this transition period.