Standing Order Requirement of Industrial Establishments

Workmen were employed with uncertain and vague terms. The Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946, was enacted to define employment conditions in industrial establishments and allow the industrial establishment to obtain a standing order to lay down the working conditions for employees. The importance of the order is felt the most in the unorganised sector. The standing order imposes a statutory duty on the employer and employee to comply with.

This study presented a comprehensive review of the standing order.

Background Of the Standing Order

Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1946, was passed to organise industrial establishments. The government laid down Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Rules, 1946, to guide employers to follow such rules.

When an employer deviates from the Standing Order, an employee can enforce it through labour courts. The act provides regular standing orders for workers, factories, and ensures cordial working relationships. The motive of introducing the standing order was to promote peace and harmony among industries to support fair industrial practices.

The Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1946; the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, and The Trade Union Act, 1926 was consolidated by the Industrial Relations Code, 2020. The Code was enacted in 2020 and stated conditions for employment in industrial establishments.

The Standing Order

The Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act 1946 introduced the standing order to review the law governing the relationship between the employee and employer. The law includes the classification of workers, working hours, attendance, suspension, and termination.

Section 2(g) of the Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1946, defines the Standing Order. According to this act, the Standing Order lays rules related to matters in the Schedule of the Act. The classification of issues under the schedule is as follows:

  1. Classification of employee
  2. Intimidation of the working period
  3. Working shifts
  4. Attendance and late coming of employee
  5. Conditions and procedure for leave application
  6. Entry in premises by gates and search liability
  7. Non-functioning of certain areas or temporary stoppage of work and the rights and liabilities of the employer and employee.
  8. Termination conditions
  9. Provisions related to misconduct
  10. Redressal mechanism
  11. Any other matter that is prescribed by the appropriate government

Conditions for the Certification of Standing Orders

Section 4 of the Industrial Establishment (Standing Order) Act provides conditions for certification of standing orders. A standing order is prepared for every matter provided under the schedule of the act.

The certifying officer or appellate authority should deal with the fairness and reasonableness of standing orders.

Process of Certification

Section 5 provides procedures for the certification of standing order:

  • The certifying officer sends a copy of the draft of the standing order to the workmen or trade union. Along with the draft, a notice is sent to call for objection. The objection can be raised within 15 days of receiving a notice.
  • After receiving the objection, the employer and the workmen are allowed to be heard by a certifying officer. After the hearing, the certifying officer decides and passes the order for modifications in the standing order as required.
  • The certifying officer then certifies the order within 7 days and attaches an order for modification as required.

Nature and effect of the certified standing order

  • The standing order lays down the liabilities and rights of employers and employees during employment.
  • Order certification has a binding effect. Both the employer and employee are bound by the standing order when it is certified. The employer and employee should compulsorily follow the terms and conditions in the certified standing order.
  • The certified standing order confirms the first schedule of the Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act.
  • Standing orders are like statutory provisions. Standing orders are not statutory provisions but are binding and must be followed by the employer and employee.
  • The orders should be fair and reasonable.
  • The certifying orders have an overriding order on the agreement as a letter of appointment.

Exclusion from the certification of certain industrial establishments

Some industrial establishments are excluded from the purview of the Act:

  • Establishment in which Chapter VII of the Bombay Industrial Relations Act is applicable.
  • Establishments where provisions of the Madhya Pradesh Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1961, are applicable.
  • Provisions of Sections 10 and 12 A of the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act 1946 do not apply to the industrial establishment under the control of the State Government of Gujarat and the State Government of Maharashtra
  • Provision of Section 13 of the Industrial Establishment (Standing Order) Act, 1961, excludes the establishment in which workmen have to follow the Fundamental and Supplementary Rules, Various Civil Services Rules, and other rules mentioned under Section 13 B or any other rules as notified by the appropriate government.

Penalties under the Standing Order

Section 13 of the Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act provides penalties for non-compliance with the provision provided by the act.

According to this section, the penalties are as follows:

  • If an employer cannot submit the draft of the order as required under Section 3 of the act, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs. 5000/-. On continuing the offence, the person is punished to pay a further fine of Rs. 200/- per day till the provisions are complied with.
  • If an employer fails to comply with the provisions of Section 10 of the Industrial Employment Act, 1946, he shall be punishable with a fine of Rs. 5000/-. On continuing the offence, the person is punished to pay a further fine of Rs. 200/- per day till the provisions are complied with.
  • If an employer fails to comply with the certified standing order, he shall be punishable with a fine that extends to Rs. 100. In the case of a continuing offence, the penalty may be Rs. 25 per day till the offence continues.


The standing orders act as a binding contract between the employer and employee. The decree of provisions laid by the standing order are to be followed by both the employer and employee. The order is certified to make it effective. The standing order must have the points mentioned in the first schedule to fulfil the statutory condition of the order. The order should satisfy the needs of the employer and employee and must be acceptable by trade unions to be certified by certifying authorities.

The Industrial Employment Act, 1946, deals with the requirement of the standing order. However, in 2020, the three acts that include the Industrial Employment (Standing Order) Act, 1946, were consolidated with the Industrial Relation Code 2020, rendering the order binding and statutorily effective.


What is a standing order?

Standing orders state the relationship between the employer and employee during employment.

What is the legality of the certified standing orders?

A certified standing order is legally binding on industrial establishments.

What is the notice period for objecting to the draft of standing order?

The notice period is 15 days to object to the draft of standing orders by the workmen or trade union.

Is it necessary to comply with the matters mentioned under the first schedule for a standing order to be certified?

Yes, the conditions specified under the first schedule must be complied with to get a standing order certified. The certifying authority ensures that all the requirements should be fulfilled before certifying a standing order.