Less Strike Leverage

Manufacturers facing a potential strike by workers have to be better prepared than in the past. The reason -- low unemployment makes it less likely that they will be able to use replacement workers, says employment law attorney Stephen Cabot, senior partner of the Philadelphia-based law firm of Harvey, Pennington, Herting & Renneisen Ltd. As a result, companies must look at other--albeit more expensive options--to maintain production.

Among them: subcontracting work at a premium price, shifting work to other facilities, building inventory, or offering customers discounts for early orders.

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