Essay on Human Resource Law

Published: 2021/11/12
Number of words: 935

Identifying and measuring value and success in sectors such as sports and business can be easy and straightforward. For instance, in sports, one can record and communicate the number of games won (Jarrar and Schiuma, 2007, p.5). Similarly, in business, one can measure and track profits and market share (Jarrar and Schiuma, 2007, p.5). However, public institutions have no easy way of measuring how well they satisfy their communities. Justice Ross’s “Future Directions: Enhancing the public value of the Fair Work Commission” looks at this very concept (2016). Ross also discusses the transformative changes and developments happening in the Fair Work Commission to respond to the Australian labor market’s economic, social, and environmental changes. According to Ross (2016, p.403), the Fair Work Commission experiences challenges in quantifying and conveying value in the public sector. It tries to communicate its success to the public by implementing creative solutions through the commission’s different initiatives and strategies, including the Future Direction initiative and the New Approaches strategy.

Ross’s article is divided into numerous sections. The section termed “Responding to the changing nature of the Commission’s work and delivering public value” looks and analyzes some of the initiatives. According to the paper, there are fifty different initiatives. The Future Directive initiative was launched in 2012 to address the issues related to dispute resolution services. The initiative was mainly directed at improving the commission’s service delivery and reducing costs associated with dispute resolution. The second initiative was launched in 2014, and it was meant to build upon the first initiative’s successes. It also meant to improve the output and the quality of the services offered by the commission.

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Apart from the Future Direction initiatives, the author also mentions some strategies. For example, the commission engaged in an engagement strategy called “New Approaches” to strengthen the professional association between employers, workers and their representatives in the workplace and to eliminate conflicts and more significantly increase productivity (Ross, 2016, p.415). The objective of this strategy was to support employees and employers in solving their problems together and to improve communication; it also meant to prevent disputes that would affect employees’ working days. The “Reduction in rostered shifts adds-up to dismissal: Tribunal” paper perfectly highlights these instances (2017, p.1). The case involving the employer and the pregnant cashier was resolved swiftly. This (New Approaches) provided a suitable alternative dispute resolution (ADR) between the employer and the cashier. Such tribunal-based ADRs have been part of Australian industrial relations since the 1900s (Gramberg, 2006, p.175). The strategy, in this case, was successful. According to Ross (2016, p.415), employees and employers reported lasting and significant workplace improvements. Nevertheless, and despite the commission’s ability and successes in launching these initiatives and strategies, they still had to deal with the challenge of communicating the commission’s value to the public.

Justice Ross cites Mark Moore, a Harvard academic in public management and leadership. According to Moore, in identifying public value, program assessment and cost-effectiveness analysis may be central (Ross, 2016, p.403). In other words, one has to study the outcome achievements of a public sector in relation to the cost utilized while doing so. For instance, the Fair Work Commission’s role revolves around helping employees and employers maintain fair and productive workplaces. To understand if the commission is providing value, one should study the Australian industrial working environments. More importantly, one should look at issues such as inclusivity, safety, and workers’ well-being. If there is a surge in inclusivity and discrimination issues, then it would be right to say that the commission has failed in its mandate. In like manner, if more employees complain of low wages, unhealthy working conditions, and prevalent job dismissal such as in the article termed “Workers displaced by robots wins job back (2016, p.1),” then the commission would have failed. However, looking and studying such indicators cannot guarantee that the commission offers value as employers encourage corporate policies that inspire healthy and inclusive working conditions.

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The article outlined numerous initiatives, but they represented a fraction of the commission’s transformation strategy. The paper lists several initiatives, but all of them aim to resolve the problem of assessing, transmitting, and communicating the value of the commission to the public. There are 50 initiatives in total, but this summary identifies two initiatives. The first is the Future Direction initiatives launched in 2012 to address the issues related to dispute resolution services. The initiative is mainly directed at improving the commission’s service delivery and reducing the costs associated with dispute resolution. The second initiative was implemented two years after the Future Direction initiative was started. The importance of these initiatives was that they aimed at enhancing the value of the commission. Moore, one of the academics mentioned in the paper, stated that the value of public commission and, in this case, the Fair Work Commission could only be measured by conducting a program evaluation and cost-effectiveness analysis. Nonetheless, this would not be sufficient to determine the value of the commission. It would also be challenging to understand if resources were adequately utilized. Did the commission spent the resources to good effect, or were the resources wasted?

References List

Jarrar, Y. and Schiuma, G., 2007. Measuring performance in the public sector: challenges and trends. Measuring Business Excellence, 11(4), pp.4-8.

Ross, J., 2016. Future Directions: Enhancing the public value of the Fair Work Commission. Journal of Industrial Relations, 58(3), pp.402-418.

Van Gramberg, B., 2006. The rhetoric and reality of workplace alternative dispute resolution. Journal of Industrial Relations48(2), pp.175-191.

2017. Reduction in rostered shifts adds-up to dismissal: Tribunal. pp.1-2.

2016. Workers displaced by robots wins job back. pp.1-2.

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