This exploratory study examines three research questions related to employees’ perceptions concerning the effects and purposes of a permanent two-tier wage structure in their employment setting. Although much of the popular literature on employee dissatisfaction with tiers has focused on low-wage tier employees, the results of this study indicate overall dissatisfaction with the effects of tiers amongboth high- and low-wage tier employees.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Balliet, Lee. “Labor Solidarity and the Two-Tier Collective Bargaining Agreement.” Paper presented at the Thirty-Sixth Annual Meeting of the Industrial Relations Research Association, Dallas, Texas, 1984.
Bernstein, Aaron and Zachary Schiller. “The Double Standard That’s Setting Worker Against Worker.”Business Week, April 8, 1985, pp. 70–71.
Bies, Robert J. “The Predicament of Injustice: The Management of Moral Outrage.” InResearch in Organizational Behavior. Edited by L.L. Cummings and B.M. Staw, pp. 289–319. Greenwich, CT: JAI Press, 1987.
Borum, Joan, James Conley, and Edward Wasilewski. “Collective Bargaining in 1987: Local, Regional Issues to Set Tone.”Monthly Labor Review 111 (January 1987): 23–36.
Bowers, Mollie H. and Roger D. Roderick. “Two-Tier Pay Systems: The Good, the Bad, and the Debatable.”Personnel Administrator 34 (June 1987): 101–2, 104, 106–8, 112.
Bureau of National Affairs, Inc.Changing Pay Practices: New Developments in Employee Compensation: A BNA Special Report. Washington, DC: Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., 1988.
Cappelli, Peter. “Plant-Level Concession Bargaining.”Industrial and Labor Relations Review 39 (October 1985): 90–104.
_____ and Peter D. Sherer. “Assessing Worker Attitudes Under a Two-Tier Wage Plan.”Industrial and Labor Relations Review 43 (January 1990): 225–44.
_____. “Satisfaction, Market Wages, and Labor Relations: An Airline Study.”Industrial Relations 27 (Winter 1988): 56–73.
Craft, James A., Suhail Abboushi, and Trudy Labovitz. “Concession Bargaining and Unions: Impacts and Implications.”Journal of Labor Research 6 (Spring 1985): 167–80.
Davis, William M. and Fehmida Sleemi. “Collective Bargaining in 1989: Negotiators Will Face Diverse Issues.”Monthly Labor Review 113 (January 1989): 12–3.
Essick, Charles E. “A Survey of Two-Tier Wage Systems.”Compensation and Benefits Management 3 (Summer 1987): 229–32.
Flax, Steven. “Pay Cuts Before the Job Even Starts.”Fortune, January 9, 1984, pp. 75–77.
Goodman, Paul S. “An Examination of Referents Used in the Evaluation of Pay.”Organizational Behavior and Human Performance 12 (1974): 170–95.
Harris, Roy J., Jr. “More Concerns Set Two-Tier Pacts with Unions, Penalizing New Hires.”Wall Street Journal, December 15, 1983, p. 33.
Hills, Frederick S. “The Relevant Other in Pay Comparisons.”Industrial Relations 19 (Fall 1980): 345–51.
Hoerr, John and Dan Cook. “A Pioneering Pact Promises Jobs for Life.”Business Week, December 31, 1984, pp. 48–9.
Jacoby, Sanford M. and Daniel J.B. Mitchell. “Management Attitudes Toward Two-Tier Pay Plans.”Journal of Labor Research 7 (Summer 1986): 226–37.
Kochan, Thomas A. and Harry C. Katz.Collective Bargaining and Industrial Relations. Homewood, IL: Richard D. Irwin, 1988.
Katz, Harry C. and George T. Milkovich. “Introduction.”ILR Report 24 (Fall 1986): 4–6.
Liggett, Malcolm H. “The Two-Tiered Labor-Management Agreement and the Duty of Fair Representation.”Labor Law Journal 38 (April 1987): 236–42.
Louis, Meryl Reis. “Surprise and Sense Making: What Newcomers Experience in Entering Unfamiliar Organizational Settings.”Administrative Science Quarterly 25 (June 1980): 226–51.
Martin, James E. and Raymond T. Lee. “Use of Referents in the Evaluation of Pay in a Tiered-Wage Setting.” Working paper, Department of Management and Organization Sciences, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, 1989.
_____ and Melanie M. Peterson. “Two-Tier Wage Structures: Implications for Equity Theory.”Academy of Management Journal 30 (1987): 297–315.
O’Dell, Carla and Jerry McAdams.A Full Report on the American Productivity Center/American Compensation Association National Survey of Nontraditional Reward and Human Resource Practices. Houston: American Productivity Center, 1986.
Ploscowe, Stephen A. “Two-Tier Compensation Plans.”ILR Report 24 (Fall 1986): 23–28.
Ross, Irwin. “Employers Win Big in the Move to Two-Tier Contracts.”Fortune, April 29, 1985, pp. 82, 84, 88, 92.
Ruben, George. “Labor-Management Scene in 1986 Reflects Continuing Difficulties.”Monthly Labor Review 110 (January 1987): 37–48.
Salpukas, Agis. “Cutting Airline Labor Costs.”New York Times, January 25, 1984, pp. 23, 26.
_____ “The 2-Tier Wage System Is Found To Be 2-Edged Sword by Industry.”New York Times, July 21, 1987, pp. 1, 47.
Seaberry, Jane. “Two-Tiered Wages: More Jobs Vs. More Worker Alienation.”Washington Post, April 7, 1985, pp. G1, G3.
Sichenze, Celeste M. “An Exploratory Study of Two-Tier Labor Contracts in the Retail Food Industry.” Proceedings of the Forty-First Annual Meeting, Madison, Wisconsin: Industrial Relations Research Association, 1989, pp. 488–94.
“The Two-Tier System Is Working Well at GM’s Delco Plant in Rochester, N.Y.”Wall Street Journal, October 14, 1985, p. 9.
Wessel, David. “Split Personality: Two-Tier Pay Spreads But the Pioneer Firms Encounter Problems.”Wall Street Journal, October 14, 1985, pp. 1, 9.
Financial support for this study was provided by the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and the Master of Arts in Industrial Relations Program at Wayne State University.
Rights and permissions
About this article
Cite this article
Heetderks, T.D., Martin, J.E. Employee perceptions of the effects of a two-tier wage structure. Journal of Labor Research 12, 279–295 (1991). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02685464
- Collective Bargaining
- Wage Structure
- Monthly Labor Review
- Employment Setting
- Industrial Relation Research Association