Slovakia: Representativeness of the European social partner organisations – Personal services sector

  • Observatory: EurWORK
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  • Published on: 20 Styczeń 2010



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The aim of this representativeness study is to identify the respective national and supranational actors (i.e. trade unions and employer organisations) in the field of industrial relations in the personal services sector in Slovakia. In order to determine their relative importance in the sector’s industrial relations, this study will, in particular, focus on their representational quality as well as on their role in collective bargaining.

Introduction

The personal services sector is developing rapidly in Slovakia. This trend corresponds with the growth of the whole service sector in the economy. However, representative bodies of social partners are not yet properly developed in the personal services sector. While employer associations exist, trade unions are not active in the sector. This is mainly because most workers in the sector are self-employed, and few workers are working as employees. Moreover, these employees often change jobs. Therefore, no collective bargaining at multi-employer or single-employer level takes place there.

1. Sectoral properties

  1996** 2006
Number of employers 43 148
Aggregate employment* 3,331 8,409
Male employment* Not available Not available
Female employment* Not available Not available
Aggregate employees 87 93
Male employees 9 52
Female employees 78 41
Aggregate sectoral employment as a % of total employment in the economy 0.16 0.38
Aggregate sectoral employees as a % of the total number of employees in the economy 0.0044 0.0048

* employees plus self-employed persons and agency workers

** gender segregated data are available only from 1996

2. The sector’s trade unions and employer associations

This section includes the following trade unions and employer associations:

1. trade unions which are party to sector-related collective bargaining (In line with the conceptual remarks outlined in the accompanying briefing note, we understand sector-related collective bargaining as any kind of collective bargaining within the sector, i.e. single-employer bargaining as well as multi-employer bargaining. For the definition of single- and multi-employer bargaining, see 4.2)

2. trade unions which are a member of the sector-related European Union Federation (i.e. UNI-EUROPA – Hair and Beauty)

3. employer associations which are a party to sector-related collective bargaining

4. employer associations (business associations) which are a member of the sector-related European Business Federation (i.e. COIFFURE EU)

2a Data on the trade unions

2a.1 Type of membership (voluntary vs. compulsory)

In general, membership in trade unions is voluntary. This applies also to the personal services sector.

2a.2 Formal demarcation of membership domain (e.g. white-collar workers, private-sector workers, personal services employees, etc.)

The domain of the Trade Union Association of Services (recently it affiliated to the Trade Union Association KOVO) does not cover any employee working in the personal services sector. According to available information, there is as yet no trade union organisation in companies operating in the sector. Therefore, there is no trade union association to represent employees in the sector.

2a.3 Number of union members (i.e. the total number of members of the union as a whole)

n.a.

2a.4 Number of union members in the sector

n.a.

2a.5 Female union members as a percentage of total union membership

n.a.

2a.6 Domain density: total number of members of the union in relation to the number of potential members as demarcated by the union domain (see 2a.2)

n.a.

2a.7 Sectoral density: total number of members of the union in the sector in relation to the number of employees in the sector, as demarcated by the NACE definition

n..a.

2a.8 Sectoral domain density: total number of members of the union in the sector in relation to the number of employees which work in that part of the sector as covered by the union domain

n.a.

2a.9 Does the union conclude collective agreements?

n.a.

2a.10 For each association, list their affiliation to higher-level national, European and international interest associations (including cross-sectoral associations)

There n,.a.

2b Data on the employer associations

Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia (Spoločenstvo kaderníkov, kozmetiky Slovenskej republiky)

2b.1 Type of membership (voluntary vs. compulsory)

Membership is voluntary

2b.2 Formal demarcation of membership domain (e.g. SMEs, small-scale crafts/industry, personal services enterprises, etc.)

Mainly small-scale crafts, self-employers and apprentice schools related to hair and beauty activities are members of the Association. Its domain is compatible with the personal services sector.

2b.3 Number of member companies (i.e. the total number of members of the association as a whole)

About 20 legal entities are members. (E)

2b.4 Number of member companies in the sector

About 20 (E)

2b.5 Number of employees working in member companies (i.e. the total number of the association as a whole)

About 750 (employees and self-employed persons) (E)

2b.6 Number of employees working in member companies in the sector

About 750. (E)

2b.7 Domain density in terms of companies: total number of member companies of the association in relation to the number of potential member companies as demarcated by the association’s domain (see 2b.2)

13-15% (E)

2b.8 Sectoral density in terms of companies: total number of member companies of the association in the sector in relation to the number of companies in the sector, as demarcated by the NACE definition

13-15% (E)

2b.9 Sectoral domain density in terms of companies: total number of member companies of the association in the sector in relation to the number of companies which operate in that part of the sector as covered by the association’s domain

13-15% (E)

2b.10 Domain density in terms of employees represented: total number of employees working in the association’s member companies in relation to the number of employees working in potential member companies, as demarcated by the association’s domain (see 2b.2)

20-30% (E)

2b.11 Sectoral density in terms of employees represented: total number of employees working in the association’s member companies in the sector in relation to the number of employees in the sector, as demarcated by the NACE definition

20-30% (E)

2b.12 Sectoral domain density in terms of employees represented: total number of employees working in the association’s member companies in the sector in relation to the number of employees working in companies which operate in that part of the sector as covered by the association’s domain

20-30% (E)

2b.13 Does the employer association conclude collective agreements?

No, it has not concluded yet any collective agreements due to the lack of a trade union partner.

2b.14 For each association, list their affiliation to higher-level national, European and international interest associations (including the cross-sectoral associations).

The Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia was member of higher-level national employer association - the Slovak Craft Industry Federation (Slovenský živnostenský zväz, SŽZ) until 2007. According to the president of the association, it intends to affiliate to the SŽZ again in 2008. The association is a member of the European Business Federation’s COIFFURE EU and worldwide sectoral organisation OMC.

3. Inter-associational relationships

3.1. Please list all trade unions covered by this study whose domains overlap.

n.a.

3.2. Do rivalries and competition exist among the trade unions, concerning the right to conclude collective agreements and to be consulted in public policy formulation and implementation?

n.a.

3.3. If yes, are certain trade unions excluded from these rights?

n.a.

3.4. Same question for employer associations as 3.1.

The Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia and the Association of Professionals for Beauty and Relaxation (see Commentary).

3.5. Same question for employer associations as 3.2.

According to available information, there is some rivalry between the above mentioned employer organisations concerning consultations on public policy formulation and implementation. Because no trade unions are active in the sector, the question related to collective agreements does not apply to employer associations.

3.6. Same question for employer associations as 3.3.

Neither the Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia nor the Association of Professionals for Beauty and Relaxation are consulted in sector-related public policy formulation and implementation.

3.7. Are there large companies or employer associations which refuse to recognise the trade unions and refuse to enter collective bargaining?

n.a.

4. The system of collective bargaining

Collective bargaining does not take place in the sector.

4.1. Estimate the sector’s rate of collective bargaining coverage (i.e. the ratio of the number of employees covered by any kind of collective agreement to the total number of employees in the sector).

n.a.

4.2. Estimate the relative importance of multi-employer agreements and of single-employer agreements as a percentage of the total number of employees covered. (Multi-employer bargaining is defined as being conducted by an employer association on behalf of the employer side. In the case of single-employer bargaining, it is the company or its subunit(s) which is the party to the agreement. This includes the cases where two or more companies jointly negotiate an agreement.)

Multi-employer and single-employer collective agreements play no role in the sector.

4.2.1. Is there a practice of extending multi-employer agreements to employers who are not affiliated to the signatory employer associations?

No, there is not.

4.2.2. If there is a practice of extending collective agreements, is this practice pervasive or rather limited and exceptional?

n.a.

4.3. List all sector-related multi-employer wage agreements* valid in 2006 (or most recent data), including for each agreement information on the signatory parties and the purview of the agreement in terms of branches, types of employees and territory covered.

No sector-related multi-employer wage agreement was concluded in the sector.

* Only wage agreements which are (re)negotiated on a reiterated basis.

Sector-related multi employer wage agreements
Bargaining parties Purview of the sector-related multi-employer wage agreements
  Sectoral Type of employees Territorial
       
       

4.4. List the sector’s four most important collective agreements (single-employer or multi-employer agreements) valid in 2006 (or most recent data), including for each agreement information on the signatory parties and the purview of the agreement in terms of branches, types of employees and territory covered. Importance is measured in terms of employees covered.

No multi-employer or single-employer collective agreement was concluded in the sector.

Four most important agreements in terms of employees covered

Bargaining parties Purview of the agreements
  Sectoral Type of employees Territorial
       
       
       
       

5. Formulation and implementation of sector-specific public policies

5.1. Are the sector’s employer associations and trade unions usually consulted by the authorities in sector-specific matters? If yes, which associations?

Employer associations operating in the personal services sector are not consulted in sector-specific public policy issues. However, the Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia has good relationships with SŽZ (as its former member), which informally represents its interests at the national tripartite Economic and Social Council (Hospodárska a sociálna rada, HSR) through peak employer organisation the Federation of Employers Association (Asociácia zamestnávateľských zväzov a združení Slovenskej republiky, AZZZ SR). The Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia also exercises its consultative rights via the Slovak Craft Industry Chamber (Slovenská živnostenská komora, SŽK).

5.2. Do tripartite bodies dealing with sector-specific issues exist? If yes, please indicate their domain of activity (for instance, health and safety, equal opportunities, labour market, social security and pensions etc.), their origin (agreement/statutory) and the interest organisations having representatives in them:

There is no special tripartite body to deal with sector-specific public policy issues.

Sector-specific public policies*
Name of the body and scope of activity Bipartite/tripartite Origin: agreement/statutory Trade unions having representatives (reps) Employer associations having reps.
         
         

* Sector-specific policies specifically target and affect the sector under consideration.

6. Statutory regulations of representativeness

6.1. In the case of the trade unions, do statutory regulations exist which establish criteria of representativeness which a union must meet, so as to be entitled to conclude collective agreements? If yes, please briefly illustrate these rules and list the organisations which meet them.

The principal statutory condition applicable for trade unions to be entitled to conclude collective agreements is to be registered as a social partner at the Ministry of Interior (Ministerstvo vnútra Slovenskej republiky, MV SR). No special regulation exists with regard to the criteria for representativeness of trade unions to bargain collectively - in general as well as in the personal services sector.

6.2. In the case of the trade unions, do statutory regulations exist which establish criteria of representativeness which a union must meet, so as to be entitled to be consulted in matters of public policy and to participate in tripartite bodies? If yes, please briefly illustrate these rules and list the organisations which meet them.

The statutory condition applicable for trade unions to be consulted in matters of public policy via sectoral tripartism is to be registered as a social partner at the MV SR. To be involved in consultations on public policy matter concerning the civil aviations sector, trade unions should be member of their sectoral trade union association. No trade union association meets these criteria in the personal services sector.

6.3. Are elections for a certain representational body (e.g. works councils) established as criteria for trade union representativeness? If yes, please report the most recent electoral outcome for the sector.

Elections are not established as criteria for trade union representativeness – in general as well as in the sector. Trade union members usually elect trade union chairpersons and committees.

6.4. Same question for employer associations as 6.1.

The statutory condition applicable for employer organizations to be entitled to conclude collective agreements is to be registered as a social partner at the Ministry of Interior. No special regulation exists with regard to the criteria for representativeness of employer organisation to bargain collectively - in general as well as in the personal services sector.

6.5. Same question for employer associations as 6.2.

The statutory condition applicable for employer organisations in the personal services sector (as well as in any other sector) to be consulted in matters of public policy via sectoral tripartite social dialogue is to be registered as a social partner at the MV SR and to be member of sectoral employer association, which covers the personal services sector. Employer associations covering the sector do not meet these criteria.

6.6. Are elections for a certain representational body established as criteria for the representativeness of employer associations? If yes, please report the most recent outcome for the sector.

Elections for the representative body of employers are not established as criteria for employers' representativeness in the sector.

7. Commentary

Few workers work in the personal services sector as employees. According to available information from employers, these employees are not interested in trade union membership. Almost all workers in the sector are self-employed persons who manage their working conditions and wages individually as a part of their own business. According to representatives of employers’ associations, the other reason for non-unionisation of the sector is the very high level of job mobility.

There are two main employer associations in the sector, but they do not have any trade union partner for collective bargaining and concluding collective agreements regulating employment conditions and wages of employees in the sector. Apart from the Association of Hairdressers and Cosmetics of Slovakia, the Association of Professionals for Beauty and Relaxation (Asociácia profesionálov pre krásu a relaxáciu) also operates in the sector.

However, it does not comply with the criteria for a sector-related interest organisation. Membership is voluntary and it covers small-scale crafts and self-employed persons engaged in hairdressing and beauty-related activities. Its domain is compatible with the sector. About 8-10 legal entities are members of the association (E), and about 800 people, including self-employed persons work in them (E).

Domain density in terms of companies as demarcated by the association’s domain, as well as by the NACE definition, is about 7-10% (E). Domain density in terms of employees represented as demarcated by the association’s domain, as well as by the NACE definition, is about 5% (E). The Association does not conclude collective agreements. It was member of higher-level national association - the Slovak Craft Industry Chamber (Slovenská živnostenská komora, SŽK) until 2007. It is not affiliated to the sector-related European Business Federation’s COIFFURE EU. According to available information, SŽZ is interested in affiliating to the Association of Professionals for Beauty and Relaxation, and discussions on this matter are taking place.

Ludovit Cziria, Institute for Labour and Family Research

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