Labour History

Working at Sunshine: A Case Study of the Recruitment, Retention and Management of Labour in a Melbourne Manufacturing Enterprise, 1946-63

Labour History (2006), 90, (1), 95–117.

Abstract

In the 1950s unemployment in Australia fell to record low levels. Official records record the low levels of unemployment but tell little about the way workers and employers reacted to this new environment. The personnel records of Massey-Ferguson at Sunshine are a window into the world of manufacturing work in the 1950s. Through a sample drawn from individual employee records we explore how workers at a major manufacturing firm reacted to a full-employment labour market. Through these records we explore such questions as labour turnover, the development of internal labour markets, the recruitment of migrant workers and the extent of over award payments. We also explore how the company attempted to cope with a highly mobile labour force.

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Details

Author details

Fahey, Charles

Lack, John

Table of Contents

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