Having a collective voice at work is part of every employee’s fundamental right, and it can make a huge difference to people’s working lives.

If employees are provided with a means to use their voice together effectively, it fosters trust, innovation, productivity and organisational improvement.

This report helps employers ensure that their organisation allows employees to safely and confidently voice their views and raise concerns. Based on survey data and case studies, the research provides valuable insight into the benefits of collective employee voice and offers recommendations on working with employee representatives.

While these findings are based on UK data, the broader implications should be of interest wherever you are based.

Download the report and case studies to find out more

Report: Collective employee voice

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PDF document 1.5 MB

Case studies: Collective employee voice

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PDF document 341.3 KB

Recommendations

The report makes a series of recommendations to help create a meaningful framework for collective voice and work effectively with employee representatives:

  • Ensure your organisation informs and consults employees in line with their statutory rights
    UK employers are under a statutory obligation to consult with employees on certain issues. In some circumstances, this includes a requirement to carry out ‘collective consultation’ with a recognised trade union or employee representatives.
  • Develop a holistic employee voice framework that combines individual with collective voice channels
    Cultivate a company culture that values employee engagement and prioritises information and consultation. Set up multiple and complementary mechanisms for employee voice, including direct methods with individuals and indirect methods for collective voice, via employee representation. Have a system to evaluate the feedback, to ensure that people’s feedback is captured and listened to from across the different voice channels.
  • Establish effective information and consultation structures and practices for employee representation
    Run elections for employee representatives and provide training for them to encourage two-way conversations. Encourage people to meet and talk regularly and informally around and outside of the formal structures and train managers so they understand the organisation’s aims and practices for information and consultation.
  • Take a joint working approach with unions so they understand and feel part of the strategy
    If there is a request for union recognition, it’s better to engage with the unions and form an agreement based on mutual understanding, preferably as part of a joint working approach. Develop effective working relationships between senior management and trade union representatives, as well as non-union representatives, and build trust through honesty and direct communications.

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