Employees deserve to be treated with fairness and respect. Giving employees this respect is critical for many reasons, both for productivity as well as liability.
First, it demonstrates to your employees that you care about their success and are trying to be fair, which is very important for productivity and efficiency. Additionally, enacting fair treatment helps to safeguard your company from dangerous liabilities that could cost you big down the road.
With that being said, it is crucial to understand what employee rights are and what the right to fair treatment entails in its entirety.
The Three Categories of Employee Rights
The main types of employee rights fall into three categories. These include:
- The right to job security
- The right to fair treatment by an employer
- The right to fair treatment in the workplace
These three categories are important to understand because they can help guide your policy and decision-making and lead to a more united workforce that understands management has their best interests at heart. Rights are essential for employees because when workers do not feel their job is secure or experience unfair treatment, productivity can sharply drop while stress and unhappiness can skyrocket.
Perhaps the most essential of these three categories is every employee’s right to fair treatment.
The Right to Fair Treatment
Fair treatment in the workplace refers to equality and fairness as it relates to financial compensation, benefits, disability accommodations, vacation time, and paid leave. It is important for both employees and management to understand what is considered fair treatment so that unfair practices can be easily identified and fixed.
Equal Pay for Equal Work
Getting paid equally for skills and job positions at the same level is an important aspect of employee fair treatment. Employees across all levels should be compensated equally for the value they provide to the company. Ensuring this type of equality will keep your workforce motivated and will prevent putting employees at odds with each other.
Fair Compensation and Benefits
Not only should employees receive equal pay for equal work, but they should have an equal benefits plan as well. Fair compensation and benefits is more than just pay — this refers to perks of a job including vacation time, benefits packages, and any other perks that help give back to employees and make their life less stressful. Be careful when designing these packages to ensure that employees at certain levels are being compensated fairly and receiving benefits that can support them.
Equal treatment should also include accommodating employees with disabilities and/or impairments. This also extends to seniors and veterans in the workplace that may require special accommodations to traverse the office or perform their job-specific duties.
In the modern-day workplace, discriminatory actions are heavily frowned upon. Every employee should feel welcomed and a part of the team, no matter their background, preferences, or personality type. If you want a cohesive workforce that provides excellent work, they need to feel included, motivated, and free from any discriminatory behavior.
The Right to Privacy
Another aspect of fair treatment is the right to privacy that every employee possesses. The right to privacy for employees includes rights such as:
- The right to refuse polygraph or drug test as a condition of employment
- The right to access employment records. While this is a relatively new right, over 50% of companies now guarantee employees the right to access their personnel files
- The right to consent for personal information to be released to other organizations
The Importance of Fair Treatment
Many executives can lose sight of the fact that their employees are entitled to a work environment that is inclusive and provides equal opportunity for success and advancement. Employees across all levels should be treated with fairness, respect, and dignity — no matter their job title.
Federal legislation regarding employee rights are in place to ensure that workers are treated respectfully and as equals within any size company. It is the responsibility of the employer to be informed regarding the interpretation of these laws, as the violations of workplace rights make the employer liable to potentially damaging legal action.
If you want to ensure that your workplace is operating at its highest potential, your workers need to feel like you care. Reach out to the fair treatment experts at HR Search and Rescue today to learn more about how you can improve the equality and transparency of your workplace.