Unions are becoming more professional in their hunt for members, according
to new research by Cardiff Business School’s New Unionism Research Group.
It shows that an increasing number of trade unions are employing specialist
organisers to work on recruitment and recognition campaigns and this is
boosting union membership.
Over half (56 per cent) of trades unions now employ specialist organisers,
compared to only 38 per cent in 1998.
This is due, in part, to the TUC Organising Academy, which has provided
trained organisers over the past four years.
The research finds that unions with specialist organisers have been more
likely to register an increase in total membership since 1997.
Between 1997 and 2000, 65 per cent of unions reported a rise in membership
compared to only 26 per cent in 1994-1998.