Industrial Relations Perspective on Lean Systems, Workers, and Unions

Type de publication:

Conference Paper


Gerpisa colloquium, Detroit (2022)


This paper examines the role of trade unions and bargaining in the lean production system. He shows that lean production can be compatible with trade unions but there are many issues that have to be considered. He also looks at how human resources functions in the lean environment. He concludes that lean production needs to take into account many aspects of employee protection. This is presented as making sure that the ‘respect pillar’ of the house of lean production always matches the ‘technical pillar’ which is ever present. Often these functions can be aided by a relatively new form of unionism that avoids ‘job control strategies’ and embraces flexibility with a form of cooperation with HR in protecting workers.


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