11 reasons why workplace fairness matters for every employer

11 reasons why workplace fairness matters for every employer
Last Updated: July 21, 2023

Fairness in the workplace is about respecting, and advancing, the human rights of all those who work within the organization. Research has shown that employees who feel fairly treated in their workplace trust their employer, enjoy their work, and are more dedicated to their workplace. Also, they are more likely to help colleagues, are more willing to go through difficult times with the organization, and stay with the business for a longer time (Eib, et. al. 2016) 

Workers who perceive their work environment as unfair will develop toxic working relationships over time (Barsness, Diekman & Sondak, 2007). They may become distrustful of managers and even act territorial, lashing out at co-workers who they perceive as a threat. In extreme cases, the mismanagement of workplace conflict can lead to allegations of creating a hostile work environment. In such cases, conflict resolution can be extremely costly.

In many cases, the topic of workplace fairness is covered by an organization's policies and procedures as well as bylaws. By law, workers are guaranteed certain rights, including a safe work environment. There are many laws on the books that guard against discrimination and harassment. Employers must also follow a variety of laws concerning work hours, unpaid time, and compensation (Bianchi, et.al., 2016).

Managers are often accused of "playing favourites" with employees, but there is great debate about what constitutes fair treatment in cases that are not explicitly covered by the law. While it’s important to avoid giving preferential treatment to one worker over another, it is equally important to reward those employees who work hard and do their jobs well. A manager should be capable of maintaining a fair workplace and producing effective results with his effective leadership skills.

What is Workplace Fairness?

Workplace fairness is there to ensure the maintenance of fair practices in the workplace to avoid and manage conflict. Conflict in the workplace can increase absenteeism and decrease productivity. Eib et. al. (2016), define workplace fairness as the glue that holds the employee and the employer. 

How do you ensure fairness in the organization?


Employee concerns over pay systems, managerial favouritism, and equal recognition are common leadership challenges. To help your organization strengthen its fairness policies, here are a few points to consider:

Create a sense that promotions are handled fairly

When an employee complains that a co-worker's promotion wasn't fair, his or her underlying question might be, "Why wasn't I promoted?" The best organizations address this by ensuring all employees receive frequent, constructive feedback and by providing personal support in professional development.

Add transparency and a commitment to equity to the paycheck

When it comes to a sense of fair play, it's not just about the amount of the paycheck that matters. The transparency of the compensation system and a clear commitment to equity by the organization are critical in ensuring people feel fairly paid.

Offer a fair appeals process

Employees must understand that they have a fair opportunity to have their grievances heard by management. By offering a transparent system to address grievances, employees may be assured that the policies in place will adequately address any issues they may have.

Reaffirm that everyone will receive an equal opportunity to be recognized

One of the fastest ways to erode a workplace's sense of fairness is by giving recognition unequally. This challenge can be especially difficult when managing employees across multiple sites. By assuring employees that they all have an equal chance to be acknowledged for their work, employees will feel that the organization recognises and appreciates them.

11 Reasons Why Workplace Fairness Matters For Every Employer

Workplace fairness ensures that employees feel valued and treated fairly, creating a productive work environment that fosters employee satisfaction. Read and find out why workplace fairness matters for employers and how workplace fairness affects different aspects of an organisation.

  • Contributes to Business Continuity

  • Attract and retains the best talent

  • Increases productivity of the organization

  • Builds long-term value For shareholders

  • Boosts Employee Morale and Engagement

  • Promote A Healthy Workforce

  • Foster Good relations between employer and employees

  • Embrace Diversity within the Organisation

  • Encourage Cooperation among Staff 

  • Reduce absenteeism and employee turnover

  • Improve communication and trust from employees

Contributes to Business Continuity

A fair workplace ensures stability and continuity within a business. When employees are treated fairly, they are more likely to be committed to the organization's success, reducing the risk of turnover and costly disruptions.

Attract and Retains the Best Talent

Talented individuals seek employment where their contributions are acknowledged and rewarded. A workplace that prioritizes fairness becomes an attractive destination for top-tier professionals, and retaining them becomes easier.

Increases Productivity of the Organization

When employees feel valued and rewarded for their hard work, they become more driven and productive, ultimately benefiting the entire organization. Human Resources professionals play a vital role in ensuring this fairness and recognition among employees, thus contributing to the overall success of the organization. If you aspire to build a career in HR, joining an HR course can provide you with the necessary knowledge and skills to excel in this field.

Builds Long-Term Value for Shareholders

When an organization demonstrates a commitment to fairness, it fosters trust and loyalty among shareholders. This trust translates into long-term investments and a positive reputation in the market.

Boosts Employee Morale and Engagement

Fair treatment enhances employee morale and overall job satisfaction. Engaged and satisfied employees are more likely to invest themselves in their work, leading to higher productivity and better results.

Promote a Healthy Workforce

Workplace fairness includes prioritizing employee well-being and safety. A healthy workforce experiences reduced stress levels and better physical and mental health, which contributes to overall productivity.

Foster Good Relations between Employers and Employees

A fair workplace cultivates a positive relationship between employers and employees. Open communication, mutual respect, and trust are essential components that lead to a harmonious work environment.

Embrace Diversity through Fair Practices

Fairness is closely linked to diversity and inclusion. By implementing unbiased practices, organizations can create an environment that celebrates different perspectives and backgrounds, fostering innovation and creativity.

Encourage Cooperation among Staff

Fairness promotes collaboration and teamwork. When employees feel they are treated justly, they are more likely to cooperate and support each other, leading to a cohesive and efficient workforce.

Reduce Absenteeism and Employee Turnover

A fair workplace reduces absenteeism and turnover rates. Employees are more likely to remain committed to an organization that treats them fairly, leading to a stable and dedicated workforce.

Improve Communication and Trust from Employees

Fairness encourages open communication channels between employees and management. When employees feel heard and valued, they are more likely to trust their employers and provide valuable feedback.



Workplace concerns about fairness are challenging for any business and can be frustrating for employees and leaders alike. Focusing on transparency and frequent communication can cut down on these concerns, allowing everyone to focus on more rewarding and productive responsibilities.

Lindah Mavengere

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