Membership Interface Unionism: A Swedish White Collar Union in Transition
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: Economic and Industrial Democracy
Based on a case study from recent innovations in the Swedish white-collar union, Sif, this article introduces and develops the concept of membership interface unionism (MIU). The concept, it is argued, captures similar trends in trade unionism as that noted in the UK by Heery and Kelly in their concept of managerial unionism. Both these recent forms of unionism are signified by closer relations between the professional organization and individual members. Membership interface unionism, however, has distinctive features that signal an explicit embrace of the practices of customer relationship management (CRM): member involvement in service development and utilization of market research; new individually tailored, proactive enabling services, often offered through Internet solutions; and more responsibilities for lay members at the company level. The first and third of these features, it is argued, are somewhat contradictory in that company-level representation has weakened. The article concludes by acknowledging the threats towards participative unionism in the apparent move towards individual service provision.
- Business and Economics
- managerial unionism
- membership interface unionism
- relationship marketing