National Labor Relations Board Chairman John F. Ring Speaks at Epstein Becker Green’s 38th Annual Workforce Management Briefing


John F. Ring, Chairman of the National Labor Relations Board, was a featured speaker at Epstein Becker Green’s 38th Annual Workforce Management Briefing, an event which brings together government officials, in-house employment counsel, human resources professionals, and Epstein Becker Green attorneys to address the latest employment, labor, and workforce management developments.

Mr. Ring’s comments from the session “The NLRB: Recent Developments and Future Priorities” were featured in Law360, “Union Election Rule Changes May Be Near, NLRB Chief Says,” by Vin Gurrieri. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

National Labor Relations Board chairman John Ring on Monday hinted that an anticipated overhaul of parts of an Obama-era rule governing union election procedures is in the works, while also declining to offer a time frame for when the agency’s proposed joint employer rule may be finalized.

Ring’s comments came at Epstein Becker Green’s annual Workforce Management Briefing in Manhattan, an event that brings the firm’s attorneys together with numerous human resources representatives and in-house counsel.

A portion of Ring’s prepared remarks were dedicated to touting the NLRB’s recent ventures into rulemaking — a process he has advocated for since he was nominated for a spot on the board as a way of tackling certain particularly thorny labor law issues.

On Monday, Ring reiterated that the board is considering a substantive revamp of a regulation issued in late 2014 that was aimed at streamlining and speeding up the process of union elections, a rule that has been derided by critics as the “ambush election” rule. …

Elsewhere in his remarks Monday, Ring touted the labor board’s recent initiative to speed up its processing of cases, saying that effort has found success that the agency hopes to build upon.

As Ring was speaking on the subject, the NLRB released statistics saying it sliced the median number of days of all cases pending before it by about 33% to 157 days by the end of fiscal 2019 and cut the total number of pending cases before the board to its lowest level since 2012.

The NLRB also offered numerous metrics that detail how its field offices were able to speed up their case processing times over the past fiscal year, nearly meeting the agency’s four year-goal of cutting case processing time by 20%.

“The statistics announced today are further evidence that our efforts to reduce case backlog and ensure timely consideration of cases are bearing fruit,” Ring said in a statement that was included in Monday’s news release announcing the statistics, some of which he referenced during his speaking engagement. “Resolving labor disputes more quickly is one of the best ways we can advance the purposes of the [NLRA].”