Publication Date



While the need for revival strategies for the labor movement has stimulated much discussion and research, little or no attention has been paid to the role of HR strategies for unions. This paper addresses the question, “What are appropriate HR strategies for labor unions in this time of crisis?” Research for this paper is largely inductive, qualitative and action research consisting of interviewing as well as some surveying and extensive literature review. Preliminary findings, pending research on broader samples of the labor movement and more prolonged review of emerging union HR strategies, suggest that unions are in great need of more effective HR strategies with a systems approach. Unions generally, by their own accounts, are lacking in the area of staff accountability and development; union officials generally resist embracing their management responsibilities; training for managers within unions is rare; and internal union politics play a significant complicating role in all aspects of HR within unions.


Suggested Citation
Margolies, K. A. (2011). Human resource strategy for labor unions: Oxymoron, chimera or contributor to revival [Electronic version]. Retrieved [insert date], from Cornell University, ILR School site:

Required Publisher Statement
Copyright held by the author.