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Is there a Tekna group at your workplace?

Published: May 4 2020

A Tekna group at your place of work is the members forum to influence your salary and working conditions. When you have a Tekna group you can claim a collective bargaining agreement and the right to be included in discussions that are of importance to you. The group elects a representative that will act as a spokesperson in meetings with company management. Tekna representatives also have an important role in supporting each individual Tekna member.

With a Tekna group you ensure dialogue between company management and the employees regarding important decisions at work. This is particularly valuable in times of crisis.

Kristin Cameron, one of our legal advisers says “The main point of a Tekna group is ensuring dialogue between company management and the employees. We are now experiencing that many new groups are being created in the COVID-19 crisis because employees aren’t happy with communications with company management. In the companies that already have Tekna groups in place we experience that the Tekna representatives already have a valuable dialogue with management, and that this is beneficial in dealing with the crisis.”

Kristin Cameron
Kristin Cameron, legal advisor at Tekna

Employees without a Tekna group may be more vulnerable

Members that don’t have a Tekna group at their workplace aren’t necessarily included in discussions regarding layoffs or other situations that might be of consequence to them.

Tekna recently performed a survey among our members(norwegian only). Results show that Tekna members experience that their companies are considering layoffs or have laid off employees already. Tekna representatives report this to a lesser degree than members that don’t belong to a Tekna group and work in companies with less than 100 Tekna members. This can imply that Tekna members without a Tekna group are more vulnerable than members belonging to a Tekna group.

“Tekna representatives have definitely been of importance to their members in this crisis” Cameron continues. “In several companies the representatives have been involved in reducing the extent of layoffs, ensured partial rather than full layoffs and organised changes in assignments from ordinary day to day operations to research and development. These are a few examples that show the benefits of having a Tekna group.”

Representatives with high competence

By starting a Tekna group at your workplace you elect members who will represent you in communication with your employer. These members will be your Tekna representatives and first line of communication from your employer and Tekna. Tekna representatives are also invited to Teknas in-demand representative training. 

“In workplaces where there is a Tekna group, the legal department in Tekna receives fewer inquiries from individual members because they have already received a lot of good information from their Tekna representatives. In our experience the Tekna representatives are agile and quick to adapt. We had a digital course last week where as many as 130 representatives attended in short notice. The job is, after all, something they do outside of their regular job, so it's really good that they attend as much as they do“ says Cameron. 

A Tekna group makes counseling easier

At workplaces where there are Tekna groups, the legal department in Tekna receive continuous information about the situation in the companies. This also provides a very good starting point for concrete counseling to individual members of the company.

“Representatives who keep us informed give us the opportunity to be prepared when talking to members. We already know a lot about the situation in the company, so when the individual members need assistance, the information we have already received from the Tekna representatives help us a lot in our guidance“ Cameron continues.

Form a group - improve your dialogue with management

You can follow the guide on tekna.no on how you can form a group in your company. Remember that you only need to be three Tekna members to form a group. 

“The normal onboarding when forming groups are introductory email and access to courses for Tekna representatives. But during these times, we've tailored the onboarding to the needs of the members. As a rule, we do legal guidance in parallel with the usual introductory course where we help the Tekna representatives in dialogue with the company“ Cameron concludes.

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