The inability Human Resource Managers (HRM) to effectively apply the provisions of the Labour Act 2003 (Act 651) at the workplace remains a challenge for a section of Human Resource practitioners in Ghana.
Although it has been crafted to provide a guide for the work environment, its implementation has been challenging for HR managers, resulting in many workplace disputes.
According to Mr. Kennedy Ewuntomah, the Senior HR Manager at Anglo Gold Ashanti (Iduapriem Mine), the remedy to most of the disputes between workers and management lay in the implementation and enforcement of the provisions of the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651).
In an interview with ADR Daily in Accra, Mr Ewuntomah said “one of the key challenges that I see confronting HR in recent times is our inability to interpret the Labour Act and be able to relate it to the workplace challenges that we face.”
“The second challenge is the incapability of the HR Department, in terms of being able to manage the workplace complexity and the sophisticated workforce we have, especially in the 21st century,” he added.
Although the HR Management profession in Ghana has witnessed remarkable improvement, especially in the area of capacity building and professionalism, he conceded that some practitioners have been found wanting in developing and implementation of workplace policies that fall in line with the Labour Act.
To be able to effectively address the challenges in management-workers relations, he noted that HR managers need to be abreast with the Labour Act 2003 so as to be in compliance with its provisions.
Mr. Ewuntomah, who was also a participant in Gamey and Gamey Group’s training workshop on “Weaving the Labour Act and ADR Act into the fabric of workplace HRM/IRM and managing differences” noted that it was “very critical that HR Management Unit is empowered and given the necessary resources to be able to address the challenges, or put in place systems and processes that would be able to motivate the worker to enhance productivity”.
He added that training and upgrading ones’ skillset also aids in avoiding these challenges.
He called on HR practitioners to continue to upgrade their skills and acquire a working knowledge of relevant laws that will enable to discharge their duties efficiently and also create a conducive work environment where both Labour and Management can collaborate to achieve organisaional goals.