Workforce reforms, in India, is one of the key drivers for Ease of Doing Business and to enhance employment opportunities. The workforce reforms require Government, business and society to work in a synergistic manner, to create an ecosystem that promotes inclusive and dynamic economic growth, along with employee development.
The Government of India initiated workforce related reforms through amalgamation, simplification and codification of the hitherto 29 labour laws to 4 Labour Codes i.e., the Code on Wages, 2019, the Industrial Relations Code, 2020, the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020 and the Code on Social Security, 2020. This reform addresses the historical complexities & multiplicity of existing labour laws and aligning with India’s economic growth aspirations. The Labour Codes have been passed by both Houses of Parliament and now has the potential of providing an integrated pathway towards workforce market formalization.
Approximately 80 % of India’s workforce are employed in the unorganized sector and more than 90 % are pursuing informal employment. Over the recent past, there has been a significant growth of flexible, platform-based and on-demand workforce. These new employment patterns have generated concerns of the need to do much more towards their well-being, wage levels, social security and decent working conditions.
The new labour Codes does address the challenges of informal employment & wages, working conditions, besides ensuring social security coverage for the workers engaged in the informal sector. The workforce reforms, through the Codes, are expected to accelerate the rate of economic growth and also address some of the barriers, for attracting local/global investments. When in place, the reforms will enable India to gain a sustainable competitive advantage, particularly in labour-intensive sectors. This in turn should be able to address the aspired workforce welfare/wellbeing with that of the nation’s economic growth aspirations.
As the subject of Labour is a concurrent subject, each State would be expected to frame rules and implement the reforms on the ground. This could be a challenging task, as different geographies of India would need the customization of ‘local-National’ realities, towards ensuring superior win - win outcomes for all relevant stakeholders.
Given the above background, CII in partnership with EFI (Employers’ Federation of India) is organizing the National Conference on Industrial Relations with the theme 'Workforce Reforms - Synergizing Outcomes of Economic & Employee Development' on 21 - 22 December 2021.
The higher order purpose of this Conference is to understand the larger framework of workforce reforms, within which the Labour Codes are expected to ensure a smooth transition, for all relevant stakeholders – Industry, Workforce, Government and Society.
The conference intends to deliberate on the status of workforce reforms in India and the specific impact of Labour Codes on the growth of the Indian economy, enhancing productivity levels, enhancing employment generation, ensuring increasing investments and formalisation of workforce.
The four sessions of the Conference would zoom in on:
- India’s Workforce reforms & its likely impact on the economy
- Implementation of the Labour Codes: Perspectives from different States
- Enabling Support Ecosystem for the informal Workforce
- International Perspectives: Learnings from other Countries, who have travelled this path
- Policy Interventions: Social Security for AllThe Conference will bring together a galaxy of thought leaders from the Government of India, select State Governments, Senior Industry Professionals, Trade Unions, Academicians, Think Tanks, Multilateral Agencies, from India and abroad.