Industrial relations refer to the relationship which exists in a workplace between the employer and his employees. Another name which many of you might have come across would be labor relations. This too has the same meaning as an industrial relations-the relationship between the workers and management of any firm/organization. The workers are often represented by a trade union.

Due to the fact that the world developing and changing at a fast pace, businesses need to keep up with these changes as well. This is the only way in which businesses will remain successful and progress in their industry. Science and technology are changing at a rapid pace and to keep up with these changes, industrial relations between workers and their employers is a must.

In order to keep relations between the employer and employees stable, trade unions are used. Trade unions are a way in which employees are able to communicate with their employers and negotiate with them on things such as pay, benefits, working conditions and things related to their working environment. The unions help in maintaining industrial relations and prevent them from breaking down as unions represent the rights and interests of their members.

Industrial relations between employers and their employees generally tend to be of conflict and tension. This is because employers are not willing to pay their employees a high wage/salary whereas workers want to be paid more for the work which they do. They want better pay, better working conditions and want their interests protected. This is why there is much conflict between these two groups. This is also the reason why most employees of a firm make sure they are part of some trade union. This ensures that their rights are protected.

These days, there are many theories and approaches which industrial relations make use of. In order to know which of these theories is the best, an in-depth analysis would be required. However, the 3 main theories which industrial relations makes use of are:

·          the unitarist theory

·          the Marxist theory

·          the pluralist theory

Each of the above theories has its own view on how the workplace should be run and what should be done in order for relations to be peaceful.

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