Factory worker strikes occur in a warehouse in the United States, as a temporary forklift driver is called upon from AFIMAC Global.

Business Continuity Do’s and
Don'ts for Employers
Expecting Work Stoppages

Business Continuity FAQ: Basics for Employers Expecting Work Stoppages

January 4, 2024

Business Continuity FAQ:

Business continuity addresses much of the uncertainty stemming from labor strikes and work stoppages. In fact, business continuity might be the most important buzzword for employers in 2024. Effective business continuity planning is essential when workforces unionize or threaten to officially pursue strike actions.  Worker unionization, labor stoppages, and union picket lines set the stage for disastrous financial and reputational consequences for employers, calling for additional assistance to make ends meet during these difficult times.

Business Continuity FAQ illustrated by temp workers on a job site in Maryland.

Be meticulous in your planning for labor stoppages and leverage North America’s leader in labor dispute management services. AFIMAC Global can help any employer navigate the uncertainty that comes with labor turmoil, considering every element of risk facing the business, the workforce, and the executives themselves. 

Business Continuity FAQ: Do’s and Don’ts for Employers Experiencing Labor Disputes

Union strikes and labor stoppages are delicate matters that come with both serious financial consequences and security risks to all those involved. Employers will need to act carefully, quietly plan for productivity disruptions, and work collaboratively despite the polarizing nature of their labor dispute.

Begin with the do’s and don’ts of labor and worker strikes tailored to employers.

Employer “Do’s” Experiencing Labor Disputes

Employers must play by the rules when a labor dispute occurs. Despite this event being divisive in its nature, all parties must work together to bring these issues to an end as quickly as possible. Consider these points and have the goal in mind to ensure your business refocuses back on productivity.

  • Do begin planning for labor disputes while bracing for the impact on your business continuity. The more time committed to planning for such issues, the better employers can manage the risks and protect the bottom line. Work alongside qualified third parties to begin preparing, explore contingent workforces, and plan for security risks on the picket lines
  • Do focus on clear and concise communication with your workforce and managers. Despite the divisive nature of a labor strike, employers must still work collaboratively with their unions to bring the labor stoppage to an end. Work closely with your managers to form common messaging to staff, next steps, and what can happen next.
  • Do respect your workforce’s legal right to organize and use their political power to negotiate with you, the employer. Any intervention to disrupt or prevent unionization on behalf of the employer could have serious legal consequences. Employers in both Canada and the United States must respect union activities, even if resulting labor disputes could compromise business continuity.
  • Do remember that less is always more, and executives will need to be tight-lipped about upcoming unionization or ongoing labor disputes. Saying one wrong thing can prompt both your workforce and the general public to lash out, shifting public sentiment in favor of your workforce.

Labor Dispute Don’ts for Employers

There are a number of challenges tied to labor disputes, work stoppages, or picketing of your job site that must be considered and carefully planned for. Without the right plans in place, the risks of injuries can soar, leaving the business in a complex position. Every detail of a labor dispute must be considered in order to protect all parties involved.

  • Don’t overlook your duty of care, even when your workforce is picketing your job site (s). Employers have a legal and moral responsibility to provide a job site that is free from reasonable risk. Security precautions will need to be taken, even if it is just baseline consultation, directing traffic, or managing conflicts. Avoid claims of negligence in the aftermath of a labor dispute, and prevent personal injuries to vendors and skeleton teams crossing a picket line.
  • Don’t underestimate your unionized workforce. All employees are coming off of a difficult pandemic, and as the costs of living rise, workers are as motivated as ever to find better employment deals with their employers. The writing is on the wall for many industries, especially in the manufacturing sector, and employers will need many resources to navigate these challenges.
  • Do not punish your staff for organizing or peacefully picketing during a work stoppage. Any sort of negative recourse for staff members before or after a strike simply for exercising their legal right paves the way for costly litigation.
  • Don’t overlook the possibility of harassment and vandalism. Labor disputes are inherently emotional since so much is on the line, and workers could lash out at others or the general public. Send a reminder that your company takes these issues seriously. Investigate every instance of violence or harassment, and hold workers accountable for their actions.

Labor Dispute Solutions from AFIMAC Global

AFIMAC is one of North America’s only solution provider for labor disputes in North America. Lean on our labor specialists to carefully plan for the risk of work stoppages and explore your options when your business continuity is challenged. Conduct continuity planning, leverage contingent workforces, secure picket lines, and use our private investigation offerings to keep the peace during these challenging times.

Clients can reach out to AFIMAC Global at any stage of a labor dispute, but the earlier the planning begins, the more effective our offerings can be. We bring workforces and security resources to you, anywhere in North America, capable of serving multiple industries in manufacturing, construction, hospitality, and so much more.

Many of the planning offerings from AFIMAC cost very little for employers, often only incurring significant financial costs the moment resources are deployed.

Stay ahead of labor turmoil and ensure your business remains resilient to anything. Contact us today and fill out the form below to learn more about your options. Speak to an AFIMAC representative and begin the process now. 

Learn more about the business continuity services of AFIMAC Global.

Have more questions? Contact us directly to learn more and fill out the form below.

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