What is collective bargaining?

As an employer, you may be party to a collective agreement. Collective agreements are negotiated between employers and unions or employee representatives, on behalf of their members. The process of negotiating a collective employment agreement is called collective bargaining. Collective bargaining can be a lengthy and complex process, so speak to us as soon as you are aware you may be entering into any form of bargaining for a collective agreement.

 Why is collective bargaining important?

  • The bargaining process lays a foundation for the relationship you’ll have with workers and their representatives.
  • Effective collective bargaining reduces or mitigates the risk of future disputes.
  • A fair collective agreement reflects the needs of your business and the requirements of workers.
  • There are legal requirements in place to promote good faith collective bargaining.
  • Collective bargaining increases the negotiating power of groups of employees that might not otherwise have it.
  • Collective agreements can set precedents for the employment relationship that can be difficult to change or remove at a later stage, so it's important to fully consider what you may be agreeing to.

How we help:

  • We provide expert advice and preparation for collective bargaining.
  • We will negotiate and bargain with representatives on your behalf, or support you to do so confidently.
  • We can assist with drafting collective agreements.
  • We can advise you on effective union relationship strategies.