Alternative Dispute Resolution in SMEs in the Construction Industry in Masvingo Urban, Zimbabwe


  • Tafara Herbert Tavengahama Julius Nyerere School of Social Sciences, Great Zimbabwe University (GZU), Zimbabwe
  • Nhamo Mashavira Julius Nyerere School of Social Sciences, Great Zimbabwe University (GZU), Zimbabwe
  • Takupiwa Nyanga Julius Nyerere School of Social Sciences, Great Zimbabwe University (GZU), Zimbabwe
  • Chakanaka Ernest Muchadenyika Julius Nyerere School of Social Sciences, Great Zimbabwe University (GZU), Zimbabwe



Alternative Dispute Resolution, Collective Bargaining, Conciliation and Adjudication


Dispute handling may present particular problems for SMEs. The research explored the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods used in SMEs and their implications on the performance of SMEs in the construction industry in Zimbabwe. The study revealed that collective bargaining and negotiation are the main ADR methods used in the SMEs while conciliation and arbitration are utilized externally at NEC and the ministry of labour. It was also noted that most SMEs do not have established ADR structures and collective bargaining and negotiation had an impact on employee performance.  Collective Bargaining, Conciliation and Adjudication


Appiah, F. A., Poku, B., & Bomfo, A. (2013). An investigation into the recruitment and selection practices of small to medium enterprises: evidence from Ghana. Global Advanced Research. Journal of Management and Business Studies, 2(3).

Banks, L., & Saundry, R. (2013). Mediation-A panacea for the Ills of workplace dispute resolution? A comprehensive review of the literature examining small and medium firms workplace mediation. Institute for Research into Organisations, Work and Employment: Lancashire Business School, 1(2).

Budd, J. W. (2010). Labor relations–striking a balance (3rd ed.). New York: Mcgraw-Hill Int`l.

Bhuiyan, M. H. (2010). Employee participation in decision making in RMG Sector of Bangladesh: correlation with motivation and performance. Journal of Business and Technology (Dhaka) 5(2), 122-132.

Blessing, W. (2008). The employee engagement equation in India. retrieved from (November 15, 2008).

Borg & Gall. (2009). Educational research: An introduction. London: Longman.

Budd, J. W. (2010). Labor relations–striking a balance (3rd ed.). New York: Mcgraw-Hill Int`l.

Cardon, M. S., & Stevens, C. E. (2005). Managing Human resources in small organizations. What do we know? Human Resource Management Review, 14(295-323).

Dineshbakshi. (2012). Small businesses and their importance. Retrieved from business-activity/revision-notes/1258-small-businesses-and-their-importance [accessed: 05 April 2019].

Edwards, P., Ram, M., & Black, J. (2006). The impact of employment legislation on small firms: A case study analysis. DTI Employment Relations Research Series, 20.

Finnemore, M. (2013). Introduction to labour relations in South Africa 11th Ed. Durban. LexisNexis.

Fowler, A. (2006). Effective negotiation in the SME sector. Institute of Personnel Management, London.

Harris, L., Tuckman, A., Snook, J., Taillby, S., Hutchinson, S., & Winters, J. (2008). Small firms and workplace dispute resolution. London: ACAS.

Hayward, B., Peters, M., Rousseau, N., & Seeds, K. (2005). Findings from the survey of SME employment tribunal applications 2005. Employment Relations Research Series, 33. London, DTI.

Howitt, D., & Cramer, D. (2011). Introduction to research methods in psychology (3rd ed.). Harlow: Prentice Hall.

Gwisai, M. (2006). Labour and employment law in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe Labour Centre. Harare.

Khattak, M. A., Igbal, N., & Bashir, F. (2012). SMEs Employee involvement and participation at work: A case study of OTCL after privatization. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences. 2(6), 469-476

Kersley, B., Carmen, A., Forth, J., Bryson, A., Bewley, A., Dix, G., & Oxenbridge, S. (2006). Inside the workplace-findings from the 2006 SMEs workplace employment relations survey. London: Routledge.

Latreille, P. L., Buscha, F., & Conte, A. (2012). Are you experienced? SME use of and attitudes towards workplace mediation. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 23(3), 590-606.

Macey, W. H., & Schneider, B. (2008). The Meaning of employee engagement. The SMEs perspective. Industrial and Organizational Psychology Journal, 1(2008), 3-30.

Makate, C. (2014). Determinants of small and medium enterprises performance in the Zimbabwean informal Metal fabrication industry evidence from firm level data. Research Journal of Economics, 10, 2347-8253.

Mahembe, E. (2011). Literature review on small and medium enterprises’ access to credit and support in South Africa. Retrieved from 20Access%20to% 20Credit %20in% 20 South % 20Africa_ Final % 20Report_NCR_Dec%202011.pdf [accessed: 05 April 2019].

Marachel, P. (2005). Building a Better future in smes through mediation, insights from a survey of FMCS mediators. Journal of Collective Negotiations, 11, 41-68.

Mulvey, C. (2010). Alternatives to arbitration in small organisations: overview of debate. Sydney: Unwin.

NECCI. (2007). Utilisation of adr system in the construction sector. Harare: Solidarity Centre.

Nyamwanza, T. (2014). A Review of the Human Resource Approaches on Strategy Implementation among SMEs in Zimbabwe. Journal of Business & Management 3, (2) (2014), 01-16

Nyanga, T., & Tapfumanei, C. S. (2019). Collective bargaining: a catalyst for dispute resolution between employers and employees in the retail industry in urban Mutare. Ushus Journal of Business Management, 18(1), 1-14.

Podro, S., & Suff, R. (2013). Mediation: An Approach to Resolving SMEs Workplace Issues. London: ACAS, CIPD.

Poku, O. A. (2012). An Investigation into the Recruitment and Selection Practices of SMEs in the Kumasi Metropolis. Global Advanced Research Journal of Management and Business Studies 2(3), 175-188.

Rowena, B., & Susan, M. (2007). Human resource management in growing small firms. Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 14, 307-320

Saundry, R., Antcliff, V., & Jones, C. (2011). Discipline, representation and dispute resolution: exploring the role of trade unions and employee companions in workplace discipline in SMEs. Industrial Relations Journal, 42(2), 195-211.

Sha, S. (2010). An investigation into the problems facing small to medium sized enterprises in achieving growth in the Eastern Cape: enhancing the strategy for developing small growth potential firms in the eastern Cape. Unpublished BComm. Master’s Thesis. Grahamstown: Rhodes University. Retrieved from [accessed: 05 August 2016].

Tustin, C., & Geldenhuys, D. (2012). Labour Relations – the psychology of conflict and negotiation in small to medium firms (2nd ed.). Cape Town: Oxford University Press.

Wedderburn, L. (2007). Labour law 2008: 40 Years on. Industrial Law Journal, 36(4), 397424 5.

Williams, M. (2011). Workplace conflict management: awareness and use of acas code of practice and workplace meditation for small firms – a poll of business. London: ACAS.




How to Cite

Herbert Tavengahama, T. ., Mashavira, N. ., Nyanga, T., & Ernest Muchadenyika, C. . (2020). Alternative Dispute Resolution in SMEs in the Construction Industry in Masvingo Urban, Zimbabwe. Ushus Journal of Business Management, 19(1), 15-30.