Companies all over the nation have programs to increase the role of workers in decision making. Some programs involve worker committees and teamwork; others involve pay. Here is a summary of the more common programs. The list was prepared by the Bureau of Labor-Management Relations at the U.S. Department of Labor.
Employee Involvement Groups or Quality Circles: These are groups of eight to 12 employees from the same department or work area. The groups address problems of mutual concern, and they allow employees to take part in decision-making on matters that immediately affect their work.
Labor-Management Committees: These committees consist of union and employer representatives from a particular organization or facility who meet regularly to discuss and recommend solutions or make decisions concerning issues of mutual concern.
Quality of Work Life Programs: QWL is a philosophy of work organization that emphasizes employee involvement in workplace decisions. It has come to symbolize any effort to improve productivity and quality by increasing employee satisfaction, interest or morale.