catallaxy files

catallaxy in technical exile

Will satisfied workers switch to Labor?

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According to a survey conducted by Roy Morgan Research “a major proportion of the Australian workforce is confused about what type of workplace arrangement they’re under.” But the workers are not the only people who seem confused. Morgan’s classifications are: individual AWA (there is no other type), collective AWA (do they mean collective agreements negotiated without unions?), union-based award (collective agreements negotiated by the workplace union?) and non-union based award (centrally set wages?). This leaves out one of the most common forms of employment arrangement recorded in the easier-to-follow ABS classifications, that of unregistered individual arrangements, which covered 31% of workers in 2004. No wonder Morgan’s respondents weren’t sure which category to pick.

This terminological confusion means that we can’t draw any real conclusions from Morgan’s attempts to measure job satisfaction by pay-setting arrangements. But the high overall rate of job satisfaction – 83% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied, and 6% can’t say – provides some further evidence as to why low levels of support for the government’s IR reforms aren’t translating into large numbers of new supporters for the ALP. Though the unions would have us believe that all that stands between us and poverty is them and the law, the reality is that market forces and relationships within the workplace, which WorkChoices won’t affect, are more significant for most people. Opposition to WorkChoices is possibly driven partly by the tendency to give more negative answers to general questions than to specific questions about oneself. But which do people vote on? Individual circumstances probably count for more.

Written by Admin

July 14, 2006 at 7:54 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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