Le Quang Thu Ngoc
- Human Resource Management -
"WE@WORK gave us an one-of-a-kind toolset that to not only handle employee grievances but also identify our systematic production issues via risk & conflict management approaches.
With more than 3000 workers, we tried many times yet failed to engage all of them given other conventional instruments such as hot lines, meetings, suggestion boxes, etc.
With WE@WORK, we had intuitively transformed the way we think & act about employee grievance handling from EASYFORM paper-based to IRFORM web-based mechanisms in almost 3 years of application.
No worker, both blue-collar & white-collar, uses the grievance handling systems if they don't trust the system makers. WE@WORK helped us take back their trust step-by-step, from protecting their identities with anonymous EASYFORM to offering various choices including face-to-face discussions until their trust becomes 100%
No employer, including the most socially responsible, makes full & sustainable committments with employee engagement or right protection if they only see the cost instead of long-term benefits of these initiatives
WE@WORK gave us chances to prove long-term & cost-effective benefits of workplace conflict management to both employers & employees"
- See WE@WORK training workshop atmosphere below -
About BWP Sonasea PQ
Far Eastern Group was established in 1937 in Taiwan with a variety of investments in a plenty of industries.
Far Eastern Apparel was founded in 2007 in Binh Duong, Thuan An Vietnam with more than 3000 production workers, supplying a number of international brands from USA, Europe, Japan, etc.
The Group motto has been "Sincerity – Diligence – Thrift – Prudence - Innovation".
The Factory in Binh Duong pledged to proactively comply with international labor & human right standards, instead of passive compliance as requested by their buyers.
Social dialogue was their priority to uphold social responsibility as well as production efficiency. They believed effective communication can help achieve 8 goals. They are (i) improved stakeholder responses; (ii) zero labor dispute/strike; (iii) reduce turnover rate; (iv) enhanced professional image; (v) increased productivity; (vi) clearer promotional materials; (vii) stronger business relationship; and (viii) steadier work flows;
WIth this in mind, they developed 12 communication channels & 6 areas of focus ranging from personal issues, collective issues, productivity, working conditions to compensation & benefits. Monthly Free Talk Forum has been their most original & effective channel until currently.
Far Eastern Apparel Ltd. Co proactively identified t of their key challenges was the costly resources to maintain all 12 communication channels & the reliability of the employee handling data to suggest or improve systematic production issues
1. The costly & complicated communication system
12 communication channels created confusion for employees to better engage;
They required a lot of costly resources that mostly were time & efforts of relevant staff & teams who already were occupied with other full-time jobs;
The quantity of data received & handled became a burden of workloads;
The poor data quality failed to correctly suggest system issues & their root causes for long-term solutions; instead it encouraged tip-of-the-iceberg solutions & quick fixes that led to failures in meeting with social responsibility requirements
2. The need for a reliable dataset to suggest changes
Leaders realised the need for a more effective mechanism for social dialogue in order to achieve the above-mentioned 8 goals of changes;
The mechanism must require more mindset & skillset transformation for all involved, from grievance makers to takers; from decision makers to decision takers;
The mechanism must produce more reliable data to suggest & drive changes that work for employees' engagement & employers' expectations;
Far Eastern Apparel gave RespectVN an opportunity to introduce WE@WORK with EASYFORM/IRFORM in Binh Duong Factory & later Binh Phuoc Factory from 2014 to 2016 to help gain 8 expected goals via improved communication & dialogue:
1. Employee Mindset & Behaviours Transformed
Both blue-collar & white-collar employees transform their mindsets & behaviors:
From anonymous & low-quality to high-quality & direct grievances/complaints
From baseless, emotional to evidence-based & constructive complaint
From negative conflicts to positive policy suggestions & recommendations
OWNERSHIP: The WE@WORK model was duplicated from Binh Duong Factory to Binh Phuoc Factory from 2014 to 2016
2. Employer Mindset & Behaviours Transformed
Leaders, managers, supervisors & trade union officers transformed their mindsets & behaviours (although the level of transformation differed between 2 factories)
From 12 communication channels to the main 2 (Suggestion boxes & face-toface)
From hardly accepting to actual allowing of anonymous grievances
From quantity-focused to quality-focused in term of better grievance handling
From deployment of semi-functional staff to full-time & trained persons-in-charge
From quick fixes to evidence-based & constructive feedbacks/responses to employee grievances;
Starting to develop & enforce key policies (productivity, wage, hours of work, engagement, career path development, etc.) based on data in conflict management & case analysis/recommendations from bottom up
KEY SUCCESSES: The case set a good example for workplace conflict management & workplace efficiency, especially in introducing the tech-aligned employee handling mechanism to replace manual ones. Finally the concept of integrated data management to serve internal rule/policy development & implementation was also perceived