The Impact of Social Dialogue and Collective Bargaining on Working Conditions in SMEs: A Literature Review

Social dialogue has been and remains at the heart of the work of the ILO. However, the varying circumstances at the workplace for many reasons has led to social dialogue being experienced at different levels and in some instances not at all.
This paper was produced as a follow-up to the discussion on Small and Medium Enterprises and Decent Work of the 2015 International Labour Conference. During the discussion the tripartite constituents of the ILO took note of the limited existing knowledge about working conditions in SMEs and the factors that influence them. Constituents subsequently identified gaps in the knowledge base with a particular view to the question of whether and how social dialogue might be a mechanism to improve working conditions in SMEs. This desk review constitutes a first attempt to collect the existing knowledge on social dialogue in SMEs and its effect on working conditions. The intention is to help ILO constituents to get an overview of the current knowledge base on the topic.