Workers who help make up the labour front within key industry sectors play an increasingly important role in South Africa’s economy.

We are aware of this and we are positioned to help employers engage and effectively manage their relationship with the MEIBC (Metal and Engineering Industries Bargaining Council).

So, it is important for employers to remember that there are seven key points you should know if you are registered with the MEIBC.

1, Levies: the levies to be paid to the bargaining council include dispute resolution levy, admin levy, sick pay fund and technological levy.

2. Employees must be graded according to the MEIBC grading structure. This structure is task based, the MEIBC then publishes annual minimum wage rates and minimum increase percentages for each grade.

3. Family responsibility leave: employees in the industry are allowed to carry over family responsibility leave for 3 consecutive years.

4. Annual leave: minimum annual leave up to 3 years’ service – 15 days paid leave. 4 years and more services with the same employer – 20 days paid leave.

5. Leave Enhancement Pay (LEP): This is a mandatory annual bonus calculated with – weekly wage x 52 x 8.33% x number of shifts worked divided by 234 (5 day week) 283 (6 day week), this roughly comes to a 13th cheque.

6. Shift allowances: must be paid for employees working on a 2 or 3 shift system.

With every advance in HR and payroll legislation, businesses must be proactive – but particularly in the case of engagement with trade unions/ labour representative bodies.

A bargaining council plays a critical role in ensuring labour relations are maintained, that companies and businesses comply with regulations, and that employees adhere to their responsibilities.

We are pro-communication and we are able to handle any HR and labour issues that do arise.

Remember, knowledge and open communication can only assist in problem solving, especially when salaries or labour disputes are involved.