Sample Business Studies Essay Paper on Ise Business & Society: Stakeholders Ethic Public Policy

    Introduction

The over 3.6 million community of individuals of both men and women has made Bangladesh become the second largest apparel exporter globally (Lawrence, pg23). On April 24, 2013, Rana Plaza catastrophically collapsed, and at the time it had over three thousand workers. This led to the death of 1, 134 workers with over 2, 500 others injured (Lawrence, pg32). The place has not had workplace safety, and health standards and they have become victims of violations advanced against the workers while the others enriched themselves by making the clothes. The market that has hosted the masterminds of this injustice remains safe while people continue to engage in arguments of who is responsible for the deaths of the workers. There is no single person taking responsibility whether the government, buyers, retailers, garment owners, or consumers.

Causes for the Collapse

  Workers

According to the reports from the different media houses, the Rana Plaza workers saw the vast cracks and crevices in the structure just the day before the collapse. The workers did not take the necessary precautionary measures to report, follow up and even strike from working. They were threatened by the authorities, and they quickly succumbed to threats and chose to remain working, and this led to their ultimate demise. If the workers had taken a bolder step, the situation would have been averted, and the deaths would not have occurred. It is also true that the workers were threatened with pay cuts in case they refused to work nor reported, but a bold step against the order of the authorities would have saved the situation.

Building Owner

The building owners were aware of the cracks and the structural problems with the building, but they did not take any critical steps to resolve the problems. After the reporting by the workers, the owners of the building went ahead in threatening the workers with a monthly salary cut in case they boycotted work. The owners did not take the matter seriously, and they reported back to the media claiming the problem was “nothing serious.” The building owners in collusion with the brand owners forced the workers to continue working amidst the structural challenges that had been seen in the building.

Similarly, it is reported that the owner of the building did not receive proper building consent from the local municipality. They had obtained a permit to do a five stories building, but they went ahead and extended by additional three stories the building illegally. The political connections of Rana helped them assume the instructions from the municipality. The Rana Plaza tragedy was as a result of a corrupt system. The building of the structure was done without observing the proper building standards, codes, laws and they also used poor materials. It is not the only building that has been constructed through advancing bribes to the authorities. The high-rise building was built illegal, and the owner of the building is also culpable for ignoring the instructions from the local municipality.

Bangladesh Government

The government authorities cannot be exonerated from this tragedy. They are part of the group that contributed significantly to the untimely death of the 1, 134 people. The government and the authorities notably failed in their roles of carrying out inspection and monitoring the illegal establishments of buildings especially Rana Plaza. The government still did not take any action even after cracks were reported in the building and reported in the local media. They failed as the government to act and save the may impoverished lives working in the building.

The state spectacularly failed to protect the rights of the workers. They gave them low wages, they worked under poor and unsafe conditions, and the government also repressed the labor unions. It is the role of the government to protect its citizens from third-party threats including through regulation, investigations, policy-making, and enforcement. The same policymakers are in cahoots with the profit-making businesses, and they are also involved in protecting the corrupt individuals. When the same government protects the people oppressing the businesses and then limits access to administrative, judicial and or legislative protection.

European Government

The Western countries together with other players who supply the garment materials for external people also bear the blame. The Western companies profited from the Bangladesh cheap labor and readily available materials. The European markets benefit from the supplies without caring for the livelihoods of the people and the state of the business conditions and human rights violations.

Apparel Retailers and Brands

The apparel retailers and brands had a responsibility to protect the human rights, but they did not at all. The retailers had the responsibility to take care of their employees, and they did not protect their employees. They exposed their employees to vulnerabilities that affected their lives. The apparels in the United States and Canada had a role in promoting the well-being of the workers. They had a role in promoting their rights by ensuring that the conditions are conducive for their working and also for not drawing huge profits at the expense of their misfortunes.

Actions to Avert Similar Situations

It is the responsibility of the government to protect its citizens from any danger and secures their working environment. The government had a role to ensure that the building was adequately inspected and ensure that the process of construction is of the prescribed roles and regulations. It is also the role of the government to come up with policies that guide the working and operations of businesses. If the government would have done its role in ensuring that the various authorities and officers have done their roles and responsibilities.

The government has a role in protecting the citizens. The protection by the government towards businesses is a primary role of the state. The government did not protect the employ garment workers and exposed them to vulnerabilities that later on consumed their lives. The government is also supposed to provide a conducive and enabling environment for businesses to thrive and grow.

Similarly, the European and the United States retailers had an opportunity to ensure that they undertake business that is legitimate and at the same time in an environment that is conducive. These retailers’ brands benefitted from an unscrupulous business on the backs of the poor struggling workers in unfriendly conditions. They had a role to act for the good of the workers and ensure that their conditions are conducive. They ought to have ensured that they engage in business where the workers are not exploited. These external retailers are obligated to ensure that they champion for the rights of the poor workers as they participate in bipartisan business with them and not feed on their backs.

The public also should be sensitized to issues that concern their livelihoods. The business community should understand their rights and freedoms. The workers ought to have taken the bold step to defy the authorities and if the authorities would have taken the pay cut on their salary, they ought to have taken legal redress. However, it is possible that the business people did not know nor understand their rights and legal freedoms. The business community and the citizens need emancipation on their rights and liberties. They also need to emancipate themselves on the different regulations regarding businesses and business law.

The government through policy and legislation should come up with laws that protect the citizens from such incidences. The laws and regulations should be stringent and punitive so that anyone who engages in such activities again faced the full wrath of the law. The laws and necessary rules should extend towards curbing corruption in the local municipality. The requirements should also go ahead and empower the enforcement bodies that have been tasked with the roles of ensuring the construction standards are maintained appropriately. Consequently, the owner of the Rana Plaza should be prosecuted and charged with mass killing and this should act as a lesson for negligent and rebellious property owners in the city (Lawrence, A. (2016)).

There are different actions that could be taken to reduce the chances of such happenings. However, one of the most effective would be for the government to take up measures and protect its citizenry. The government through the legislature should come up with the necessary laws and regulations aimed at curbing such occurrences. The laws and essential rules should be punitive especially against errand property owners. The government would play a significant and critical role in ensuring that the business community is safe and can conduct business without fear of intimidation from their owners. 

Also, it is the role of the government to ensure that the working conditions of the employees are safe and conducive. The workers were working in the impoverished environment and at the same time receiving meager wages as they overwork. These conditions contributed greatly to the collapsing of the building since the employees are not empowered enough to stand for their rights. The poor pay, intimidation and unsafe working environment created loopholes for the employers to intimidate the employees. It is the goal of the state to ensure there is the clean working environment and that businesses thrive without unnecessary intimidation from the authorities and unscrupulous employers.

The government also will be effective in curbing such occurrences from happening because it has the instruments of power to fight corruption. If the government could have fought corruption in its system, the authorities would have worked to the required standards as a stipulated local municipality. The government would play a critical role because it has the instruments of power to do so. The government also can manage to efficiently work and alleviate the challenges that led to the death of thousands of people trapped in the collapsed building. Similarly, it would be easy for the government because it can effectively enforce standards and measures for the all the building standards.

Strategies to Prevent Worker Abuse

The strategies are aimed at improving the working conditions of employees in any organization. The workers, employees, and businesses form unions that champion for the rights of the individual workers. The strategies for the prevention of worker’s abuse include the existence of transparency where aggressive goals and expectations are set focusing on progressive measures rather than hoarding. Collaboration principle is also critical and involves engagement of the broad set of value chain participants in the process of development including competitors, worker, and even consumers. The strategies are also based and hinged upon technology enablement where diverse technologies are used to gather data and information together with data visualization technologies in the communication.

The businesses should set out clear expectations for the suppliers and then measure the expectations. Where there are no clear expectations for the suppliers to meet anything that comes the way is taken. It was one of the sayings of the pioneer of total quality management who came up with the saying that one can expect what they inspect. Although the codes of conduct cannot guarantee the complaint behavior, the codes set the necessary standards upon which the measurement is made.

The corporates have codes of conduct that can be linked to a long historical precedent. The organizations and businesses should come up with codes of conduct that establish specific expectations for the suppliers especially when it has to do with labor issues in the market. The set of requirements should be geared towards increasing disclosure and transparency. The expectations are inclusive of the role actively played for all the parties in the creation of institutions and structures that give support to the local communities where the suppliers operate.

 In this setting, the garment business should set out to ensure that there is ultimately no poor working relationship between the suppliers and the business manufacturers. For the business to take place, the inter-business corporation should ensure that there is no occurrence where one party is taking advantage of the other. The mode of operation between the suppliers and the business manufacturers should be that there is no existence of unscrupulous businessmen taking advantage of the poor conditions in the market.

The businesses can also tap into the knowledge and experience of workers by the use of ubiquitous mobile technology. There has been the growth of the internet in the few decades. The businesses nowadays are using mobile phone technology in the gathering of data from the workers on the labor experiences. The business community should apply the use of crowdsourcing data technology to gather information for social analysis.

The platform nowadays can use different channels for online resources users and Twitter and also some other instances use short message feeds. Therefore, the working conditions can be easily monitored especially in the relationship between the manufacturing industry and the suppliers. Although this prototype phase is barely passed, the tools outrightly can be used to demonstrate how the crowdsourcing technology can be linked to mobile technology in helping address the different challenges that face working conditions. The corporate communities can also engage the community. The collaboration practices between the suppliers, the corporate organization, and the manufacturing business enhance the strategies advanced towards improving the working conditions of the employees.

Similarly, the corporates should set out and draw a picture of the supply chain that the organization and corporate body can share with other people. Publicity is very critical since they support greater transparency and disclosure. The publicity of the corporate organization’s supply chain is the remedy. The visualization process has increasingly grown into a choice for transparency and corporate disclosure. This helps the corporations to remain accountable for their decision making processes including the selection of the partners in the supply chain.

The companies make their supply chain process visible to the public, and this helps the sharing of information on their suppliers. It is true that the supply chain is becoming more and more complex, the greater the opportunity for the entrance of criminality. Community engagement and data visualizations for the sake of information are continually growing critical tools in the fight to end the slippery and unfair conditions in the labor industry. The garment industry can establish an online website that is interactive. The user could manage to view the various industries in the garment industry, the number of workers, brands and the products and the address of the factory.

The corporate firms can also partner broadly with the other competitors in the industry. The unknown nature of the unfair labor conditions, there are challenges that will arise in the detection of abuses in the labor industry, remedying practices and policies and determining causes. In the case of the Bangladesh tragedy, there was an accord called the Bangladesh Safety Accord in the effort to bring safety in the garment industry. The resultant effort was an impressive collaboration that involved several companies, Bangladesh government, and civil society. These signatory companies and organizations have committed to vacating Bangladesh, and at the same time, they still could face legal action if they do not.

Additionally, the corporation should strategize to harness the creativity of the crowd. The competition among the different market players has surfaced creative ideas for the period of the last over 300 years. Although this idea of using competition in finding the solution of social problems that are complex may sound far-fetched, the discrete elements focus on designed competition with the significant problem elements might yield results beneficial impacts.

The innovation yields the best results when establishing for specific problems with ranges of solutions not resolved through field expertise. The competitors benefit from the diversity in motivation by a well-designed structure of competition. The competitors also benefit in organizational variety where the group’s design can provide custom organizations the can fit best the existing problems. The organization diversity can include rival collaborations and work that comes with incentives to work and pool resources in finding the solutions to problems. Similarly, competition comes in a variety of the participants where there are challenges that indeed attract a wide range of expertise. For these types of challenges which do not require a narrow group of the solver, a diversity participant results in ideas exchange that helps in innovative solution generation.

Therefore, where there is a range of broader ideas in a corporate organization and only traditional experts, there would be a crisis. The dedicated resources by different participants in finding solutions quite often than not exceeds the amount of the prize. The competitors, on the other hand, help in the maximization of the variance and then allow efficient resource allocation by rewarding the best ideas after their development.

Conclusion

Therefore the strategies to prevent worker’s abuse involve setting out expectations that are clear, precise and concise for the suppliers, tap into the knowledge and worker experience, draw a supply chain picture and then share the picture with the other corporations and the community, partner with other competitors, and harnessing crowd creativity. The abuse of workers contributes to the detriment of the organizational progress as seen in Rana case.

Work Cited

Lawrence, A. (2016). Ise business & society: Stakeholders ethic public policy. Place of publication not identified: Mcgraw-Hill.