Further to the answer by our Boss, I would say that if you are appointed as Welfare Officer as per the provisions of FA then only you are supposed to be not to deal with disciplinary cases against workers or appear in courts on behalf of management against workers in labour disputes.
As a HR head (and not appointed as WO u/r FA) you can perform this functions. But if you are a HR head and appointed as WO also, then you can not deal with disciplinary cases against workers or appear in courts on behalf of management against workers in labour disputes.
Duties of Welfare Officer are defined in "Mines Rules-1956" and not in Factories Act-1948. But.......... According to me the now-a-days, there is a very thin line between a Welfare Officer & a HR Manager/Personnel Manager or Personnel Officer, as the case may be. Often there is only one Welfare Officer in an Establishment because the Owner/Agent/Manager of the Estb. is required to appoint only one Welfare Officer in the Estb. employing 500 or more employees but upto 1000 employees. There are very less establishments which employ more than 1000 employees on regular basis in a single unit.
In such case, the so called Welfare Officer or for that matter any HR Manager/Personnel has to accomplish the duties towards welfare of employees and also take care of IR/Legal and alike matters also.
So no need to get confused. It is better to accept the opportunity and prove your excellence. But what I would advise is that you should be fair in what-ever you do, however, to maintain industrial relations, 2+2 is not always 4. The result may be different at many times. That you will have to adjust. Which you will learn by time and with the guidance of experienced seniors, no matter from which field other than Personnel/HR.
In line with Sh. Korgaonkar,
I would like to summarize above discussion as the employee appointed as HR&IR Head and nominated further with an add-on responsibility of Welfare Officer (as per Factory Inspectors records) cannot deal with disciplinary cases against workers or appear in courts on behalf of management against workers in Labour disputes.
This conclusion can be considered as the thin line between a WO & a HR&IR head job role.
Hope your goodself as an expert agrees with me.
Thanks & Regards
I fully agree with my senior colleague Sh korgaonkar that the bar to deal with the disciplinary cases against a worker or appear before a conciliation office or in a Court or Tribunal on behalf of the Factory management is restricted for the Welfare officers,who is appointed under a statue. As such the Welfare officers, who are appointed under the Mines Act,1952 or the Factories Act,1948 have been restrained to deal with the disciplinary cases. There is no restriction otherwise.He is right that the Role & Duties of each of HR Head & Welfare Officer are quite different.In my opinion, one mainly works for and in favour of the Management whereas the other works in favour of the workers primarily for their welfare within parameters of the rules and in consultation with the management. As such it will not be fair to amalgamate the duties of Welfare Officer as well as HR Head.
In regards to the mail posted by Sh AK Jain, I agree that duties of Welfare Officer are defined in Mines Rules,1956 but would like to add that Section 49 (1) of the Factories Act,1948 provides that wherein 500 or more workers are employed, the occupier shall employ such no. of welfare officers as may be prescribed. Section 49 (2) of the Act empowered the State Govts to prescribed the duties, qualification and condition of service of such officers.In accordance with the same almost all the state Govts have framed their rules. For instance the State of Punjab has framed "The Punjab Welfare Officers Recruitment and Condition of Service Rules ,1952'" vide their notification no. 206 I-LP-52/1204 dated 26th March,1952. I am sorry to disagree with Sh Jain on the suggestion that one should accept the opportunity of handling both the responsibilities and prove the excellence.In practical situations, it is always very difficult to maintained the balance particulars organisation where there is existence of a strong union.
I remember an incident where an official was holding additional charge of Admin Officer for a week or so. One of his staff has applied for co's accommodation, which was recommended by him but was later rejected the same as Admin Officer.His explanation was that as a Deptt head, he has to see the welfare of his staff but as an Admin officer, he has to show that he is neutral and not favoring his staff.
Member since Aug 2011
As per my suggestion in small company both H.R. and Welfare Officer post is
looking after by one person only. The responsibility may differ as per concern
and rules passed by Management as per your Apppointment Order. Ultimately what
i want to say that strictly follow the Functions mentioned in your Appointment Order.