Employer and Employee: Employment is a relationship between two parties, usually based on a contract where work is paid for, where one party is the employer and the other is the employee.
An employer is an organization, institution, government entity, agency, company, professional services firm, nonprofit association, small business, store, or individual who employs or puts to work, a person who is called an employee or a staff member.
The employer has the mandate of compensating the services rendered by the employee in a way that is agreed upon by both parties in the employment contract or as per the organization’s policy. These ways include a salary, an hourly, daily, or weekly wage, and other employment benefits as legally outlined by the local laws and provided by the employer.
In a workplace that is represented by a union, the employer bears the obligation of paying as per the union-negotiated contract. The employer has the power of terminating the employment of a worker if the employee fails to meet the standards expected at the time of employment or if he or she breaks some rules as set by the employer.
An employee is a person who works for an organization or a company on a part-time or full-time basis and receives compensation for the services rendered in the form of a salary. However, not every individual who offers his or her services to an organization or company gets compensation for the rendered services that can be considered an employee.
An employee is hired for a specific job or just to provide labor and does his/her work in the service of another entity, mostly the employer.
The main difference between an employee and a contractor is that the employer has control over the activities of the employee, but the contractor does his or her work independently. The employee has a specified salary or wage and is bound by an employment contract, whether written, express or implied.
The organization which has hired the services of the employee does control or if not, they possess the right to control the work which is done by the employee and how the work is done.
Difference between Employee and Employer
The objectives of an employer and those of an employee are different and necessary for the existence of that relationship. Employers aim to improve their productivity be it organizational or industrial. By hiring the services of the employee and assigning them to a role that suits the employee’s qualifications.
The employer targets to maximize the productivity of that specific area or to eliminate errors that lag the general productivity of the organization.
The employee, on the other hand, seeks the job and renders the services required by the organization in exchange for the compensation in form of salaries and periodical wages. This gives the employee the ability to support themselves financially. And also to enjoy other employment benefits as may be provided by the employer.
Level of Authority
The employer has more authority than the employee. In fact, the employer can and, in most cases, monitor and controls what the employee does, and sometimes even how they do it. Employees carry out roles that have been assigned by the employer and report to the employer. However, the employee does not have authority over the employer. Their authority can only be exercised with lower-level employees. The employer also has the authority of terminating the employment of the employer if justified by the company policy and the employment contract.
Roles and Responsibilities
The role of the employer is to protect the health, welfare, and safety of the employees and any other persons that may be affected by the activities of the business. The employer provides other benefits for the employee besides the salary.
This includes providing things like health covers which extend to the employees’ family if they are parents and giving them catered-for vacations to ensure they are satisfied. This also improves their productivity. They should provide a conducive and safe workplace for their employees and ensure they are paid in good time.
The employee has the responsibility, among others, of obeying a lawful and sensible order as stipulated in the contract of employment. He or she should serve the employer faithfully and uphold loyalty and diligence when carrying out his or her duties. Employees are also required not to misuse any confidential information they acquire from the employer during the time of service.
Another difference between the employer and the employee is the direction of cash flow in the company or business. For the employer, the salary is a deduction from the income of the company. This income could be from the proceeds of the business if it is an enterprise or from grants and sponsorship if it is a non-profit association. The employer gives out cash. However, for the employee, the salary is an addition to their finances as they are the recipients of the cash given by the employer.
Employers’ Responsibilities towards Employees
These are the main ones:
- Employers must give their employees a place to work and make sure they have access to it. They must give them the tools, equipment, and other things they need to do their work.
- Employers must pay their employees the salary and benefits they agreed to, including vacation, paid holidays, and other types of holidays.
- Employers must make sure their employees’ working conditions are safe.
- In some cases, employers must give their employees written notice that their contracts are ending or that they are being laid off. Note that employers can pay employees a sum of money instead of giving the notice.
- Employers must treat their employees with respect. They must make sure their employees are not harassed or discriminated against.
NOTE: If an employee signs a written contract with the employer, it might place more responsibilities on the employer than the ones required by law.
For example, an employment contract might say that the employer has to pay employees who have to use their own cars to do their jobs. Or the contract might also say that the employer has to pay back their employees for travel or entertainment expenses if they show their receipts.
When Employers Don’t Respect Their Responsibilities
Employees and employers can try to settle things by talking to each other. In some cases, employees must try talking to their employer before taking any further steps.
Employees can file a complaint.
Where an employee files a complaint depends on which law applies to the situation, the jurisdiction, the amount of money the employee is asking for, and whether the employee belongs to a union.
If the employee belongs to a union, the union can usually present a grievance (a complaint) on the employee’s behalf for situations like these:
- The employee disagrees with the employer about what the union contract (called a “collective agreement”) says.
- The employer did not respect one of the employee’s legal rights.
A person called the “grievance arbitrator” decides whether the grievance is justified. If the grievance is about the employee’s health and safety at work, the Tribunal administratif du travail can also decide whether the grievance is justified.
Employees should talk to a labor law expert before quitting a job. The expert can tell employees how quitting will affect their rights to file a complaint. The expert can also tell them how to prevent their employer from taking them to court after quitting.
When Employees Don’t Respect Their Responsibilities
If employees don’t respect their responsibilities, the employer is allowed to take certain actions:
- discipline employees, such as giving a written warning, or suspending them
- take other action against employees, such as giving a letter evaluating their performance, or demoting them (that is, giving them a lower job)
- fire employees if they do something very serious, such as stealing from the office
- take employees to court to make them pay an amount of money (for example, if an employee quits without telling the employer in advance, or if an employee quits before the date in the employment contract)
- take employees to court to stop them from doing things that are harmful to the business.