The Kaiser Permanente Labor-Management Partnership, 2000-2005
This case, the, first in a series of three, will be followed by two forthcoming studies on subsequent phases of the project.
Kaiser Optical Services
Wesson Memphis Refinery
Department of Energy Mound Facility
A Public Sector Case Study
New York League of Voluntary Hospitals
General Mills Manufacturing
RAI then led a joint union-company design and implementation process to develop self-managing, team-based, multi-skilled organizations in two major new production units constructed at the existing West Coast facility. The operations have pay-for-skills and performance-based pay plans. Subsequently, RAI led similar joint union - company design processes to develop similar high performance organizations and new work systems in two facilities in the Midwest. The company publicly states that it has achieved 30 to 40 percent improvement in operating performance resulting from these efforts
For a copy of this case study, please contact Harvard Business School Publishing Customer Service Department at 617-783-7600, and ask to purchase a copy of number 9-587-111, "General Mills: Manufacturing Year 2000 Task Force", or contact us, and we will be happy to help you obtain a copy.
Moving from Interest-Based to Results-Focused Bargaining, Stepp, John R. and Bergel, Gary I.
Utilities Industry Council Weighing Effects of a Major Legal Change, Rayburn, Stephen A., Perspectives on Work, Winter 2008, Reprinted with permission of the Labor and Employment Relations Association.
Contact Center of the Future: Employee Empowerment Key to Customer Satisfaction, IBEW Local 1245 News, Posted November 9, 2007.
"On Labor Day:,
Labor, management working together
"Exploring Ways to Improve Labor-Management Relations and Collective Bargaining"
From 2000 to 2005, RAI consulted to Harvard University and the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers (HUCTW), leading collaborative efforts to redesign work organization and business processes throughout the university. In these RAI-managed projects, joint labor and management teams validated customer requirements, analyzed business processes, and learned about staff needs, then redesigned both the work and the processes to enhance the commitment, involvement and performance of the workforce through proven design elements that typically include participation in decision-making, team-based work organization, an emphasis on skills training, and alternative pay systems. Click here for the full article, "Harvard University and the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers (HUCTW)," originally published in the Winter 2006 issue of Centerpiece, which author Jorge I. Dominguez, former Director of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University discusses performance results of the New Works System effort in Central Administration, no "a much better workplace" in which staff "perform their work more effectively" and "derive greater personal satisfaction from it."
Schneider Australia consulted the State Education Department of Victoria and Australian Labor to conduct Schools in 2020, a study that will focus on modernizing the education system. The study will help the parties evaluate what schools would look like in 2020 without any changes to the system, the desired future for the education system in 2020 and “the gap in between” – what needs to happen to get to the desired state. Australian Education Union Victorian president Mary Bluett welcomed the 2020 study, predicting a huge overhaul in the way children are taught and stating that the rapid growth of technology and changing needs of families could spell the end of the traditional classroom. Click here for two articles on the study, originally published in the September 30, 2005 issues of the Herald Sun and The Age Newspaper.
Kaiser Permanente Ohio Region
According to labor and management officials surveyed by the Bureau of National Affairs, rising health care benefit costs are the leading cost challenge facing employers in the United States, and such costs are likely to remain the most problematic issue in collective bargaining negotiations for the foreseeable future. In early 2004, Cinergy Corp., an electric and gas utility, was confronted with this problem in negotiations with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1347, which represented the electrical workers in Ohio. The company and union chose an innovative approach and the result benefited everyone involved. Click here for the full article, "Tackling the Cost of Health Care Benefits: Cinergy and the IBEW," by RAI President and CEO, Dr. Thomas J. Schneider, published in the Summer 2005 issue of Perspectives on Work.
RAI helped Kaiser Permanente, the Permanente Medical Group and the Coalition of KP Unions make history again in 2005, leading a National Bargaining process that resulted in a new five-year national agreement that covers 82,000 workers at 400 facilities in nine states and the
International industrial relations expert Dr. Thomas J. Schneider warns that any decline of union membership has serious implications not only for workers, but also employers and society as a whole. “A vibrant labor movement is a defining characteristic of strong democratic societies,” says Schneider, President and CEO of RAI and chairman of Schneider (Australia) Consulting. In “Defending Integrity” Schneider discusses the essential and critical role of professional associations in a free society and approaches to achieve better results. Click here for the full article first published in the June/July2004 edition of Professional Network.
"Interest-Based Negotiations in a Transformed Labor-Management Setting," Nils O. Fonstad, Robert B. McKersie, and Susan C. Eaton, "Negotiation Journal" January 2004.
"Kaiser Permanente: Using Interest-Based Negotiations to Craft a New Collective Bargaining Agreement,"
Robert B. McKersie, Susan C. Eaton and Thomas A. Kochan, "Negotiation Journal" "
"The Shadow Negotiation and the Interest-Based Approach at Kaiser Permanente," Deborah M. Koln, "Negotiation Journal" January 2004.
In the January 2004 issue of the Negotiation Journal, Harvard and MIT scholars introduced a group of essays that evolved from a March 2003 symposium on the trailblazing new labor-management-physician partnership and use of interest-based negotiations (IBN) at Kaiser Permanente (KP), one of the largest integrated healthcare programs in the United States. These four essays briefly trace the history of the IBN approach (successes and failures), the growth of this phenomenon, and its use in collective bargaining settings. The scholars cited the KP case, the focus of the symposium jointly sponsored by MIT's Institute for Work and Employment Relations, and Harvard's Program on Negotiation as "by far the largest instance of the use of IBN in U.S. labor relations history." Click here for the full article, "Taking Stock of the Kaiser Permanente Partnership Story," by Susan C. Eaton, Robert B. McKersie, and Nils O. Fonstad, originally published in the Summer 2004 issue of the Negotiation Journal.
Click here for the full article originally published online at Bloomberg.com.
President and CEO of Restructuring Associates Inc., Dr. Thomas J. Schneider speaks internationally on working with the union movement, rather than against it, to improve a company's performance. Click here for the a related article,"Industrial Design," by Helen Vines, originally published in the September 2001 issue of HR Monthly.
In an interview with Ingovernment, a leading Australian government magazine, RAI President and CEO Dr. Thomas J. Schneider, compares the challenges facing the US and Australian public sector organizations: resistance to change, insulation from marketplace pressures, political process and public relations issues. Click here for the full article, originally published in the January-February 2000 issue.
Food Plants Partner With Unions to Boost Competitiveness,
This May 1999 Food Engineering article highlights the "blue book" policy statement developed by the American Federation of Grain Millers and RAI to serve as a guideline for local unions in establishing labor-management partnerships. It further discusses RAI's work in organizational redesign and establishing labor-management partnerships at the (former) General Mills Betty Crocker plant in Toledo, OH, and the Hunt-Wesson vegetable oil refinery at Memphis, TN. Click here for the full article.
The Evolution of U.S. Labor-Management Relations,
Authors Dr. Thomas J. Schneider and John R. Stepp examine recent workplace innovations and their linkage to labor relations." Click here for the full chapter.
Click here for the full article.
Click here for the full article, "Detroit Edison, UWU Contracts Underpin Partnership Principles," originally published in the Collective Bargaining Bulletin on 4 September 1997.
A Model for Union-Management Partnerships
Reprinted with permission of the Labor and Employment Relations Association
In Robert B. Leventha'ls article, originally published in the June 1991 issue of The Journal for Quality and Participation, managers can gain insight to working with unions as they consider, or, start, efforts to convert their traditional organization into a high performance, high involvement work system. Click here for the full article.
The Grain Millers’ Role in Creating Labor/Management Partnerships For New Work Systems,
Best Practices at Yale: A New Beginning After more than thirty years of tumultuous labor-management relations, Yale University and FHUE Local 34 signed an unprecedented eight-year bargaining agreement designed to help turn their adversarial relationship around. This video, prepared by Yale University, offers an introduction to the Best Practices Initiative at Yale, as well as to the commitment necessary to creating and sustaining a culture of engagement in which everybody benefits.
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