HR Basics: Employee Rights

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HR Basics is a series of short courses, designed to highlight what you need to know about a particular human resource management topic. In today’s HR Basics, we explore employee rights affecting the employment relationship and the appropriate management of those rights.

Employee rights are the powers and privileges derived from the law and tradition within the context of the employment relationship. Employees have some basic rights as citizens, but those rights are further influenced by human resource policies and rules an employer establishes. However, there are now a multitude of laws and employee rights that affect employer–employee relationships.

Rights are offset by responsibilities, which are obligations to perform certain tasks and duties. Employment is a reciprocal relationship in that both the employer and the employee have rights and obligations.

Employers have an obligation to recognize and respect the rights of employees through appropriate management practices: Employee rights are the powers and privileges within the employment relationship. Rights management is the planning, organizing, leading, and controlling of employee rights.

The employment relationship is a reciprocal one in which both employers and employees have statutory and contractual rights, as well as responsibilities. The employer has a unique obligation to manage employee rights in balance with organizational needs.
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