The relation between An Employer and His Employee

The relation between An Employer and His Employee

The difference between the spirit and expectation between a company and its employee  sometimes becomes the trigger of employment issues. To anticipate it, Islam has allowed the existence of a balance and transparent working contract between those two parties.

The employment sector today is one of the most wanted sector by the youth, particularly in our country. According to the data issued by the Ministry of National Education, 60,87% of high school graduates and 83.13% of college graduates are more interested in becoming employees (job seeker) rather than attempting to open a work field (Source:, edition:Saturday, 08/10/2011 12:07 WIB).

The number of work force of this country is so large, that the employment issue becomes a major problem to tackle and sometimes it is taken care with different approaches. The imbalance between the number of the work force and the work field causes some of the companies to respond to this issue as they pleased and some of them set a high standard and various requirements during the recruitment process if the new employees.

This condition certainly provokes critics from many parties, particularly the non-governmental organization concentrating in employment matter, and the job seeker. But on the other side, the employer believes that such condition is already a fair condition that is not worth questioning. It happens as the consequence of professionalism demand of a company.

Relationship between an Employer and his employee

Every one of us must have realized that there is a mutual relationship between a company or an employer and his employee. The company needs the employees’ skills or expertise, whereas the employees need some rewards for their work.

Since the relationship between them is a mutual one, then what ideal between them is a reciprocating interaction to take place. The company should trust its employees, and vice versa, the employees should trust their company.

The company, for example, are required to try to give the best to its employees. That is how the Messenger of Allah -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- advised the employers or bosses.

Al Ma’rur Ibn Suwaid narrated: One day, I visited the house of Abu Dzar -may Allah be pleased with him-. At that time, he was wearing a burda (a kind of blanket) and his slave was wearing similar fabric as his. Spontaneously, we advised him, “O Abu Dzar, it is better for you to take back your slave’s blanket thus you can make a nice clothes from it. As for your slave, it is enough for you to give him other ordinary clothes. Responding to our advice, Abu Dzar said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- said, ‘They are your brothers, whom Allah has given to you power over (them). Hence whoever has his brother under his power, should give him proper food as he eats proper food. And give him proper clothes as he also wears proper clothes. And he shouldn’t burden him with heavy work that troubles him. And if he did that, he should help him.” (Narrated by Au Dawud)

Conversely, the employees should carry their work with maximum effort and full of mandate. Mandate in working means that you work professionally, thus you could yield maximum result. In a hadith, the Prophet said,

“Truly, Allah the Exalted is pleased if you worked upon something, you perfected it.” (Narrated by Abu Ya’la and others).

Urwah Ibn Abil Ja’d al Baariqy narrated that one day a group of merchant came to Medina. Then the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- gave me one dinar, and said, “O Urwah, come to the merchants and buy me a goat.” Without thinking further, I immediately came to the merchant and bargained the goat that they sold. After that, I managed to buy two goats for one dinar. After I bought them, I took them home at once.

In the middle of the street, a man came and bargained the goat that I brought, then I sold one goat to him for one dinar. Then I came back to the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- bringing one dinar and a goat, and I told him, “O Messenger of Allah, this is your one dinar, and a goat that you want.” Inevitably, he was amazed and asked me, “What have you done?”. To answer his curiosity, I told him what have I done. Next he prayed, “O Allah, bless him in all of his transaction.” (Narrated by Ahmad and others).

Working contract, guideline for the relationship between employer and employees

Each of the employer and employee must have a dream, ambition, comprehension, and expectation that he wish to get from the other party. But at the same time, not all of those hopes could be realized, moreover if they have different expectations and wishes.

The fact has proven that so many of the employers wished to have many of their works done with the smallest of wage, whereas the employee wished to receive large wage with the smallest of work.

This difference of spirit between them sometimes sparks frictions and clashes. And a clash between employer and employee is a disturbance to the continuity of the business in general and the interests of both parties in particular.

Realizing this difference of spirit that is prone to cause problems, from early on, Islam has taught us an effective tips to ensure the harmony between the two parties. The relationship between employer and his employee has been regulated in several indications, among which is the saying of the Prophet – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- : “All muslims are obliged to fulfill the requirements that they’ve agreed upon, except the one that violate the shari’a thus it prohibits the lawful or legalize the unlawful.” (Narrated by Abu Dawud and At Tirmidhi).

The working agreement between employer and his employee is a strong guideline that regulates the rights and obligations of each party. Whatever thing that have been agreed and written in the memorandum of working agreement must be followed by both parties. The hadith above stated that every contract must be fulfilled, as long as it follows two stipulations below:

– Firstly, it has been agreed by both parties with conscience and without coercion.

– Secondly, it doesn’t violate the shari’a. This is the contract that Allah mentioned in His decree, which can be translated as, “Believers! Honor your bonds!” (QS. Al-Maidah/The Table Spread: 1)

If both stipulations have been met, then according to the shari’a law, each party must obey every point of agreement between them. Any considerations and reasons that are not written on the contract should be put aside. The following story might be your inspiration to accomplish your working contract.

A companion named Abu Humaid As Sa’idy narrated that one day, the Messenger of Allah – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- assigned a man from Al Azed tribe to collect the zakat. When he got back, he immediately made a report of zakat that he managed to collect. He said, “These are zakat that I’ve collected, and I give to you. And this is a gift that I got.”

Upon hearing his words, the Messenger of Allah -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- said, “If what you said is true, then why don’t you just sit inside you father and mother’s house, and see if there is any gift that will come to you.”

After that, he preached to give explanation to his companions. And among his words were, “Whoever of you that I assign to perform a task, then he should hand over all the things he got, a little or a lot. And whatever wage/reward that is given to him, he may accept it, and whatever prohibited, he should restrain himself from it.” (Narrated by Muslim).

By regarding the shari’a law that regulate the relationship between an employer and his employee, it is no doubt that a conducive relationship between the two parties could be established. And may this simple explanation adds to your knowledge. And Allah knows best.

Author Sheikh DR. Muhammad Arifin Baderi, MA

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