Collective agreements in Germany are legally binding, which is accepted by public opinion, and this is not a cause for concern.  While in the United Kingdom there was (and probably still is) an “she and us” attitude in labour relations, the situation is very different in post-war Germany and in some other northern European countries. In Germany, the spirit of cooperation between the social partners is much greater. For more than 50 years, German workers have been legally represented on boards of directors.  Together, management and workers are considered “social partners.”  What are the benefits of a single union agreement? Workers are not required to join a union in a given workplace. Nevertheless, most industries with an average union training of 70% are subject to a collective agreement. An agreement does not prohibit higher wages and better benefits, but sets a legal minimum, much like a minimum wage. In addition, an agreement on national income policy, involving all trade unions, employers` organisations and the Finnish government, is often, but not always, reached.  Although the collective agreement itself is not applicable, many of the negotiated terms relate to wages, conditions, leave, pensions, etc. From: Union agreement in A Dictionary of Human Resource Management “The advantage of a single trade union agreement is that it ensures that the conflict within the organization is minimized and promotes cooperation between staff and management, and that the disadvantage of a single union agreement is the strike of workers who demand negotiations on their terms. What are the pros and cons of a single union agreement? A form of union recognition inspired in the United Kingdom by the EETPU electricians` union (now part of Unite) in the 1980s. Agreements on one or more unions are also referred to as “new style agreements” and “no strikes” and include the granting of recognition to a single union in return for guarantees to avoid conflict and promote cooperation between management and workers in the workplace. These agreements generally include a package of measures that include, on the one hand, the support of employers to the union and the allocation of facilities to their representatives, as well as the requirement for training, participation and uniform status for workers.
On the other hand, it can accept the union, flexible work, binding arbitrations to settle labour disputes and representation by an enterprise committee that cannot rely on union representatives and which has only an advisory or advisory function. Union agreements have been seen by some as the basis for rebuilding British labour relations on a more cooperative basis, and recent partnerships between employment services include many of their elements. However, they have been controversial within the trade union movement, not least because trade union agreements have been offered by employers through competitive “beauty contests” and, in a number of cases, agreements have led to the demise of rival unions.