Business Discussion Questions

The United States of America, a country that is regarded as one of the most influential and powerful countries in the world, is experiencing an observable growth in its economy. This is clearly seen by the increase in its productivity as well as the greater wealth accumulation that most of American companies are enjoying. However, contrary to the popular belief that with economic growth comes more job opportunities, an increasing rate in unemployment has remained a problem in the United States (Business Week, 2004).
Such kind of phenomena could be attributed from the fact that the country’s utilization of information technology and other sophisticated machineries are causing the loss of jobs for most people. These technological innovations are indeed increasing the output of most companies but these machineries tend to replace the jobs that human-workers used to do. In relation to this, more companies are also shifting their manufacturing operations to other countries that have cheaper labor in order to lessen the cost of production.

Nevertheless, it is better that jobs are maintained in the domestic level not only to sustain the employment of the country but also to prevent anomalies and human right abuses that are happening in developing countries in terms of labor rights (Bernstein, Shari, and Malkin, 2006).
The Fortune 500 companies have the responsibility of ensuring that all the areas that are involved in the operations of their business properly adhere to the standards that are imposed by the law. As such, this also includes making sure that the subcontractors that they hire especially in the manufacturing of their goods also observe the necessary requirements imposed by the labor code. This is a part of the overall process of their business, which is why it is essential that they hire competent subcontractors that would not engage in “sweatshops” as a means of production.
Moreover, even if the companies would not take accountability for the practices of their subcontractors, they would still suffer from the consequences of it. This is greatly observable in the situation of companies like Nike and Reebok who are experiencing various complaints and even a threat of consumer boycott because of the allegations that its subcontractors adhere to “sweatshops” (Bernstein, Shari, and Malkin, 2006).
The reputation that took them so many years and huge amount of money to establish is tainted by the illegal practices of their subcontractors. As such, it is not only justifiable but also a wise decision to take responsibility for all the operations of their business, which includes hiring competent subcontractors.
References
Bernstein, A., Shari, M., & Malkin, E. (2006). A World of Sweatshops. Business Week. Retrieved November 12, 2008, from http://www.businessweek.com/2000/00_45/b3706008.htm
Business Week. (2004). Where Are The Jobs? Retrieved November 12, 2008,          from            http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_12/b3875601.htm.

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