Workforce Relations

Collective Bargaining


Collective bargaining is the process by which a collective agreement is negotiated. Bargaining involves a series of meetings between the union and the employer where proposed changes to the collective agreement are discussed. If both parties agree, the union will present the proposed agreement to their members (the employees) for ratification (to vote to accept the proposed agreement or not). If the terms are accepted, an agreement is reached.

How Employee & Labour Relations Assists

The Employee & Labour Relations Officers represent the employer at bargaining sessions and prepare and present employer proposals and review the proposals presented by the union. Once a new or renewed agreement has been finalized and agreed to by the parties, Workforce Relations is also responsible for ensuring the agreement is implemented, including any agreed to changes to employee terms and conditions.

Policy/Legislation (Authority)

The Labour Relations Act

Top Manitoba Public Service Employee Questions

Typically, your rights in the existing agreement will remain in place until the new agreement is reached.

It can vary greatly. Sometimes parties can reach an agreement in a matter of months, while other times negotiations can go on for multiple years. The time required to negotiate a collective agreement is largely dependent on how far apart the union and the employer's respective proposals are.

While collective bargaining does not always follow a linear process, typically bargaining includes the following steps:

Preparation > Exchange of proposals > Review and costing > Discussion/Bargaining > Details settled > Ratification

Additional Resources and Training

Manitoba public service supervisors/managers and human resource practitioners looking to better understand the roles and responsibilities of various parties under a collective agreement may register for the course, Management of the Collective Agreement, Discipline, and Performance Management, through Learning and Development (L&D Access Required).

Contact Information

If you cannot find what you are seeking, feel free to contact a member of the Workforce Relations team by clicking here