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Progressive employment equity – the ins and outs of reality for business

Posted by on Oct 13, 2017 in Blog, Human Resources | 0 comments

In reality, employment equity represents a regulatory challenge for South African businesses and the only truly effective way to ensure compliance and benefit is to have a plan in place and follow it proactively. Another reality check is that the country’s labour law is clear when it comes to employment equity, and there are legislative requirements to which ‘designated employers’ must adhere to. Designated employers, in labour terms, are defined as businesses with an employee headcount over 50, a turnover above the industry threshold and/ or a municipality/ organ of state. These requirements include several straightforward instructions like having to consult with employees on Employee Equity matters, implement affirmative action measures, and conduct an analysis regarding barriers to employment equity and identify areas of under-representation. However, it is the development and management of an employment equity plan that forms the crux of this set of regulations, specifically relevant targets and goals to be achieved. The regulations have been put in place to guide businesses to ensure that they fulfil several criteria, chief amongst which is to submit employment equity reports to the Director General at the Department of Labour. This is a mission-critical function and businesses cannot afford to ‘drop the ball’ when it comes to the development of the plan or its enforcement. The designated employer must determine the duration of the plan, the procedure used to monitor and evaluate the plan, the dispute resolution procedure regarding the plan, as well as the appointment of senior manager responsible for the plan and finally submit the EE report to the Director General. It is important to note that the submission deadline is 01 October for manual submissions and 15 January (2018) for online submissions. Non-compliance can be costly and could result in fines of up to R2,7m or 10% for the fifth contravention. Businesses must navigate the various processes involved in compliance with employment equity regulation, as well as the Code of Good Practice, as outlined in the Government Gazette 40817 of 28 April 2017. These steps include communication, awareness and consultation, conducting an analysis, developing the employment equity plan and dispute resolution. Don’t wait until it’s too late before you take control of this mission-critical discipline.  ...

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It’s madness – money back for investing in your employees!

Posted by on Feb 3, 2017 in Blog, Human Resources | 0 comments

Money back for investing in your employees, let’s guide you through the process… It’s that time of the year… and South African employers who want to take advantage of the money-back guarantee on employee investment should be mindful of the fact that the Workplace Skills Plan (WSP)/ Annual Training Report (ATR) submission deadline is on 30 April. For some companies, it is an arduous and challenging undertaking to ensure compliance and the timely delivery of the SETA report. For most businesses, there is a genuine desire to invest in skills, but also secure the return on investment. We want our market to know that we are in a position to help, and we have the expertise to add value. Some decision makers may ask: what has this submission deadline got to do with us. After all, not every business will take on training and skills development or investment in employees at the same time. In our experience the more knowledge one has of the HR market, the better – and the more information, the better. The fact is that each business sector has its own SETA (Skills Education Training Authority) and the Skills Development Act requires employers to submit a WSP and ATR to their respective SETA at the end of April. It is worthwhile noting that employers with a total salary bill of R500 000 + over a 12 month period are required to pay SDL levies to SARS every month.  SARS distributes these fees to the respective SETAs which in turn is allocated to grants. Here is the exciting part (especially those businesses focused on building their workforces):  Up to 20% of the invested monthly amount can be claimed back from your SETA for all training, including internal training expenditure, to develop your employees. SETAs offer mandatory grants to employers investing in their employee development. Discretionary grants are also granted to develop scarce skills. I feel it is important to stress the valuable assistance that CRS Technologies can offer. Our legislation division can advise you on the best practice process to comply with legislation, compile your WSP/ ATR and Pivotal Skills report, optimise your BBBEE score and help to increase the financial benefits for your organisation. For the months from February until the end of April, CRS can assist you with the successful delivery of your SETA report submission. Don’t delay… contact us today!  Email us at info@crs.co.za to schedule a conversation. Read more: WSP & ATR...

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SA proposed minimum wage

Posted by on Dec 20, 2016 in Blog, Human Resources, Payroll | 0 comments

SA proposed minimum wage announced 20 November 2016 South African employers need to be aware that the latest minimum wage report, released on Sunday 20 November 2016 by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, is an important milestone for the local HR and HCM industry. The proposed National Minimum Wage (NMW) is R3 500 per month, amounting to R20 per hour. It was presented to the National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC) by a panel appointed to advise on the level at which the NMW should be set. At present this is merely a legal direction and has to be agreed upon by all stakeholders, including labour, business, government and communities before it is officially ratified and becomes law. Currently, 47% of all workers earn less than R3 500 per month. Labour and community constituencies at NEDLAC wanted the level to be set between R3 700 and R4 500, an amount the panel concluded would put employers under pressure and lead to job losses. Why is this relevant? It redefines the employee/ employer relationship, specifically focused on unskilled labour and how roles are managed going forward. It is important to note that if signed into law, employers will have a two-year adjustment process to implement the new minimum wage. Irrespective of whether or not this legal development is agreed upon or returned for further deliberation and change, the fact that South Africa’s HR industry (in particular informal labour) has reached this point, bodes well for the future. As always CRS Technologies is available to assist with any queries or questions you may...

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Why Mozambique’s foreign recruitment policy matters

Posted by on Oct 29, 2016 in Human Resources | 0 comments

Anyone keeping a close eye on global recruitment trends would have noticed the announcement by Mozambique of new expatriate immigration hiring regulations. This means that Mozambique has imposed new immigration regulations governing the employment of foreign employees as a measure to reduce local unemployment. We have a vested interest in keeping ahead of developments that shape HR in business and there are several aspects of the new regulations that need to be kept in mind by Mozambican employers: – Private Employment Agencies can only hire expatriates to work at their own premises and will not be allowed to sponsor work permits on behalf of clients or third parties. Short term work permits where employees with specialized skills are required, will only be valid for 90 days to start, with the possibility of two 30-day renewals. Work permits under Quota category will only be granted once the expatriate’s academic records have been submitted and a certificate of equivalence has been obtained. Employers should avoid using employment agencies to sponsor the work permits and prepare themselves for longer processing time frames when obtaining work permits and ensure that expatriates are working on the correct permits. Furthermore, labour supply companies are no longer allowed to employ foreign employees to be seconded to third parties and will have 12 months to comply to these regulations; Companies must now terminate employment agreements with expatriates when Mozambican workers are dismissed in order to reduce the expatriate quota. It is very important to note that the new regulations do not apply to oil and gas, and mining sectors. Clearly, more countries are beginning to protect local resources and unemployment is becoming more serious. We will keep everyone informed of developments going forward. As always our legislation team is available (info@crs.co.za) if you require any additional...

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Walking the compliance tightrope in Africa

Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Blog, Human Resources | 0 comments

Irrespective of the industry or sector a business operates in, there is no getting away from compliance with employment legislation. It is a juggling act for decision makers, having to apply the right resources at the right time to ensure that all bases are covered and all boxes ticked. Compliance becomes even more pressing when businesses decide to expand, particularly to emerging markets like Africa. From a South African point of view, authorities have tightened the rope on penalties for those who default on compliance. The reality is that non-compliance can literally break a business. One example is employment equity. Non-compliance will incur a 10% penalty of annual turn-over. There are so many factors that influence the situation and there are many considerations. In addition to the rights and responsibilities of both the employer and employee, there are a host of legalities and documentation involved in ensuring everyone can work legally. Other challenges that impact on employment legislation compliance include misperception of the law, misunderstanding or lack of knowledge about developments and their implications. CRS Technologies is the vanguard of HR and HCM technology solutions, integration and application. We are aware of what compliance with employment legislation entails, and we understand why issues like the Employment Equity Amendment Act makes such a difference. Businesses will be audited to ensure compliance and this is where external experts make all the difference. Internal audits or audits by external service providers, like CRS, will assist in ensuring that the company complies and is ready for any surprises....

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The regulation and labour minefield awaiting small business

Posted by on Dec 17, 2015 in Blog, Human Resources | 0 comments

All credible businesses in South Africa must deal with local labour issues, regulatory bodies and legislation – there is no way around these realities. However, while larger enterprises are generally equipped to deal with critical considerations like wage negotiations and employee working conditions, the same cannot always be said for the small-to-medium (SME). However, approach is everything and a change in approach to compliance management is what SMEs can count on to ensure sustainable, effective employment regulation. It is important for decision makers in SMEs to face the challenge head on – irrespective of what approach is decided upon. Essentially, it doesn’t matter whether to outsource or acquire the necessary knowledge, it just matters that the challenge is taken on. Find the most effective way to manage your Labour Relations Act checklist by putting processes and systems in place – this will help the business comply with the myriad of laws and regulations which will give you control and insight over any type of employment negotiation. My advice to any small employer is to be honest about the financial status of the business when entering into any form of negotiation. The golden rule is to understand the LRA regulations and be fair! The fact is that South Africa’s labour relations and legislation is complex and places significant pressure on SMEs and SMMEs. To deal with complex laws round employees takes a great deal of time and efforts, and can also result in additional expenses, fines and penalties. It is always best to seek the input and assistance of...

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