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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 1: An Overview Of Malaysian Industrial Relations


Objective :
Understanding what is Industrial Relations;
Describing the Industrial Relations System : Unilateral, Bilateral and Tripartite
system;
Identifying who needs to study Industrial Relations;
Realizing the influence of International bodies;
Government departments and agencies;
Industrial Court
Tutorial Questions
1. How far would it be correct to argue that the incidents of industrial conflicts is
dependent on
the presence of a positive legal framework assigned principally to regulate the
actions of
employers and trade unions.
2. Conflicts are not necessarily good or bad but must be evaluated in term of its
individual and
organizational function and dysfunction. Discuss.
3. Suppose youre the HR Manager and are having the following problems. For each
problem,
which government agency would you turn to for assistance?
a) An employee complains that the union will not allow members to speak up at the
local
unions meeting.
b) The company and the union are deadlocked over the term of a new labour
agreement.
Self Assessment Questions
1. Who are the parties involved in the industrial relations system?
2. Malaysia has a tripartite system of industrial relations. What does this mean?
3. What is the role of the Ministry of Human Resources in the industrial relations
system?
4. List the major labour laws. What is the purpose of each? Which department of the
Ministry
of Human Resources is responsible for enforcing each of these laws?

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 2: The Employment Laws (Part 1)


Objectives :
Understanding the Malaysian Employment Act;
The Enforcement of Employment Act;
Describing the functions of Labour Court;
Determining the issues covered by the Employment Act;
Learning what is a Contract of service, Written and Oral Contracts;
Duration of the Employment Contract;
Tutorial Questions
1. Should industry conflict be regarded as inevitable in an industry society? Why?
2. What are the causes of industrial Conflicts?
3. Evaluate the Contribution of the Human Relations school to an understanding of
industrial
Conflict.
4. Over - emphasis on strikes results in an inability to detect the symptoms of
Conflict other
than strike symptoms and inappropriate policy Prescriptions. Discuss.
5. Why are some industries more strike prone than others?
Self Assessment Questions
1. What is the main purpose for the existence of the Employment Act?
2. Which workers are protected by the Employment Act?
3. What are the main matters that can be settled by the Labour Court?
4. What is a Contract of service?

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 3: Employment Laws Part 2


Objectives:
Understanding the process of termination of contract, Notice;
Realizing Payment of Wages: Wage periods, Advances deductions, Truck system;
Explaining the employment of Women
Describing the Children and Young Persons Act, 1966
Tutorial Questions:
1. An industrial relations Professor once stated: The Union business agent is the
most
important member of your personnel department. Comment.
2. What is the proper role or first-line management in Contract administration? How
can the
first-line supervisor be made more effective in handling Grievance?
3. From the perspective of society, is there an argument to be made in favor of
strikes? Is a
strike ever in the publics best interests?
4. Why should governments be regarded as important party to any system of
industrial
relations?
5. Explain the machinery, which the Federal Government has established for
regulating the
conditions of employment of its own employees?
6. Public service employment can never be fully depoliticized. Discuss the
industrial
relations implications of this statement.
Self Assessment Questions
1) Explain the process of Contract termination.
2) Outline the termination benefits.
3) Describe the Children and Young Persons Act 1961

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 4: Trade Union (Part 1)

Objectives:
Introduction to Union Movement;
Explaining the legal definition of trade union;
Find out why do workers join trade union?
Realizing the Trade Union objectives;
Illustrating the right to form and join a trade union;
Explaining the registration process of a trade union;
Tutorial Questions:
1. In your own words, explain why Unions usually file the most grievance?
2. How are local and national unions effected by International Competition?
3. When an employee has a Complaint about a Management action in a unionized
operation,
how does he or she go about resolving us?
4. What factors have led to the formation of employer associations?
Self Assessment Questions
1. Why do workers join trade unions?
2. What are the main implications, which can be deduced from the legal definition of
a trade union?
3. What actions can employers take to discourage their employees from joining a
trade union?
4. Who can join a union? Who cannot join a union?
5. Comment on the strength of the trade union movement today?
6. Why do employers join unions?

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 5: Trade Union (Part 2)

Objectives:
Identifying the Workers Unions;
- Number of Unions;
- Size of Union;
- Types of Unions: In-house Union, National Union and Public union;
Explaining the Employers Associations;
Describing the MTUC, its functions and objectives;
Explaining other trade union;
- Malaysian Employers Federation functions and objectives;
- Malaysia Labor Organization
Tutorial Questions
1. What factors unite and divide the employer associations?
2. Has there been any trend towards wider union involvement in social and political
issues?
3. Has the government any real business in interfering with the internal decision
making
process of trade union?
4. To what extent can government regulations be successful in guaranteeing
democracy within
unions?
Self Assessment Questions
1. What is an in-house Union?
2. Outline the difference between National and Public Union.
3. What are the functions of the Malaysian Trade Union Congress?
4. Outline the Malaysian Employers Federation objectives.

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 6: Collective Bargaining (Part 1)


Objectives:
Understanding what is a Collective Bargaining;
Find out the objectives in conducting a Collective Bargaining;
Describing the Union Bargaining Strength:
- Recognition;
- Financial strength;
- Solidarity;
Explaining the recognition and de-recognition procedures;
Identifying the collective bargaining procedure and process;
Tutorial Questions
GPL is a company employing between 100 and 200 skilled engineers and
electricians backed by about twice as many unskilled and semi skilled workers in
each of 4 major urban areas.
The head office employs about 300 clerks and threes a substantial transport
section. About half the drivers and no craft workers are members of union called
General Transport Union and similar proportion of all the other workers are member
of other union.
GPL has been growing fast. Its management has hitherto determined salaries and
condition of work without actually involving union officials and although in the past,
there have not been
any labour problems.
There have been a number of occasions in the last year or when a dispute has only
just been avoided.
Recently management was approached by General Trade Union official with a view
to obtaining sole negotiating rights.
Assuming GPL grants sole negotiating to the GTU, youre required to
a) Give 4 benefits, which may result from such representative system.
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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA


b) Give 4 benefits of collective bargaining in such a situation.
2. Outline and explain unfair labour practiced by:
a) Unions;
b) Management.
3. Explain the main industrial actions that can be taken by a trade union.
4. What are guidelines for an effective negotiation?
Self Assessment Questions
1.
2.
3.
4.

What is a collective bargaining?


What are the different between unilateral and bilateral decision making?
Describe the step in the collective bargaining process?
What factors influence the outcome collective bargaining?

Topic 6: Collective Bargaining (Part 2)


Objective :
Find out the characteristic of effective negotiators;
- Communication skills;
- collections of information;
- Deciding objective, strategies and tactic;
Understanding Collective Agreement;
Identifying Items Commonly Found in Collective Agreement;
Public Sector;

Tutorial Questions
1. Since labormanagement cooperation is important to the economic success of
the business and eventually to the union ability to negotiate wage gains and other
benefits for members, what are some of the ways you could recommend improving
labor management co- operations?
2. Describe the major incidences of strike?
3. Assume your company has properly conducted compensation program. If several
employees ask you why they receive different hourly pay rates even though they
perform the same job, how will you respond?

Self Assessment Questions


1. What are the characteristics of an effective negotiators?
2. Describe the item commonly found in the collective agreements.
3. Why is the wage setting system in the sector public sector different from that in
the private sector

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 7: Trade Disputes and Industrial Action

Objective :
Understanding the trade disputes;
Find out the different between Picketing , strike;
Describing the industrial action could be taken by the employer;
Explaining the settlement of trade disputes:
- Direct negotiations;
- Conciliation;
- Arbitration.

Tutorial Questions
1. Should all workers have the right to strike? (Consider special groups such as
doctors, post office staff and banking employees)
2. The Union of Transport Employees (UTE) had for the last six months been
negotiating with XYZ Bus Company on proposals for their third collective
agreement. However, after five meetings the company refused to continue
negotiations. Advise the union representatives what actions they might take to
solve this problem. Make sure you inform them of the possible consequence of
their actions.
3. What are the economic consequences of strike action?
4. In case of impending strike action by employees what preparations might an
employer make?
Self Assessment Questions
1) What is a trade dispute and what causes such disputes?
2) List the types of industrial action that may be taken by workers
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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA


3)
4)
5)
6)
7)
8)
9)

Are a picket and a demonstration the same?


What is a lock-out?
How can an employer continue production once a strike has been called?
Under what conditions would a strike be illegal?
What is the role of the Ministry of Human Resources in setting labor disputes?
Explain the difference between voluntary and compulsory arbitration.
What are the differences between conciliation and arbitration?

Topic 8: The Industrial Court


Objectives:

Understanding the structure and proceedings of the Court, Awards of the Court;
Find out what is unfair dismissal claims;
Explaining the code of conduct for Industrial Harmony
Describing the cognizance of Collective Agreements

Tutorial Questions
1. For a trade dispute that will be settled by Industrial Court to exist, the employer
or employee concerned must be represented by the union. However, there are two
exceptions to this rule. What are those exceptions?
2. Why has there been a recent trend towards co-operation between
Union/Management?
3. Outline the Industrial actions that can be taken by Employers.
Self Assessment Questions
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.

What is the main purpose for having an arbitration system?


What is the main function of the Industrial Court?
Describe the structure of the Industrial Court?
Who can represent the parties during Court proceedings?
Can Court awards be appealed against?
Describe the type of cases the Court has the jurisdiction to hear.
What type of cases can be referred direct to the Court by the parties concerned?

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INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS IN MALAYSIA

Topic 9: Industrial Discipline


Objectives:
Find out the importance of Disciplinary Action
Understanding the Disciplinary Actions, Disciplinary Action for Misconduct
/Unsatisfactory Performance
Illustrating the Guidelines for an effective Disciplinary Action
Explaining Industrial court Award and unfair dismissal

Tutorial Questions
1. How do preventive and corrective disciplines differ?
2. Outline the steps involved in informal disciplinary Procedures for an organization
with unionized employee and show how the procedure would operate in a case of:
a) Persistent absenteeism
b) Theft of envelope from the organizations offices
3. The extreme hostility of American business to trade Unionism was responsible
for the
states abandonment of its traditional laissez-faire policy in industrial relation.
Comment
on the accuracy of this statement.
4. Because of inadequate resources, Australian Trade Unions have been severely
handicapped in their ability to provide adequate services for their members.
Discuss.
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5. To what extent have Unions developed a commitment to advancing the interests
of working
women?
6. A Union business agent commented, I dont mind having my members getting
disciplined
so long as management follows the procedures in administering discipline and gives
the
members due process. However, Im not going to do their job. It serves neither my
union
nor the company to have an Employer stop disciplining employees because
management
doesnt understand how to discipline.
What problems are created for the union when discipline is warranted?
Self Assessment Questions
1. When do organisations need to take disciplinary action against employees?
2. List examples of misconduct which, in your opinion are serious enough to justify
dismissal.
3. What is meant by progressive discipline?
4. What penalties can an employer use to punish an employee?
5. What is a domestic inquiry?
6. What is meant by natural justice?
7. What is constructive dismissal?

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