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SEPTEMBER 2020 – SOUTH AFRICA

UIF TERS
It is important that employers note the following:

Latest communication from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF)

On Monday, 21 September 2020 acting UIF Commissioner Marsha Bronkhorst announced that the UIF plans a payment run for all outstanding payments for April, May and June on the date of the announcement until today, 22 September 2020.

Thereafter the UIF plans to run payments for the period 1 July to 15 August 2020 from 23 to 26 September 2020.

The payments were placed on hold after auditor-general Kimi Makwetu found that poor financial management and verification controls were in place, which resulted in funds being paid out to beneficiaries who were not eligible.

Following the findings, Labour and Employment Minister Thulas Nxesi announced that current UIF commissioner Teboho Maruping would be placed on suspension, along with other fund management members.

The fund has since scheduled multiple payments to fast-track payments this week and has initiated discussions with government departments and agencies to assist in synchronising the data to ensure that COVID-19 TERS payments reach the right and authentic beneficiaries.

Employers are reminded that incomplete forms will not be automatically processed. The process has been made easier for employers to know what is still outstanding through the development of the discrepancy tab in the system. Employers can also use FAQs on the Department of Employment and Labour website.

Employers are reminded of the following closing dates for applications:

·        For 26 March to 31 May: 25 September 2020

·        For 1 June to 30 June: 15 October 2020

·        For 1 July to 15 September: 30 October 2020

No further applications for the respective periods will be accepted beyond the dates specified.

 

 

Contact our legislation team at info@crs.co.za if you require any additional information.
© 2020 C
RS Technologies (Pty)Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

JULY 2020 – SOUTH AFRICA

UIF TERS BENEFITS

It is important that employers note the following:

Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) to continue accepting claims

The Department of Employment and Labour released a media statement on Thursday, 2 July to inform employers and employees that COVID-19 TERS claims submitted for April, May and June 2020 will still be accepted and processed

As per the directive issued in Government Gazette 43161 by the Employment and Labour Minister on 26 March 2020, COVID-19 TERS benefits are to last for a period of three months

The UIF will continue to process and pay claims submitted for this period until the cut-off date is determined, even though June was the last month for the COVID-19 TERS benefits as per the directive

The UIF Commissioner also indicated in the media statement that while claims for the determined period will be accepted, the fund is currently experiencing technical difficulties around the opening of the system for June submissions.

He apologised for the delays and stated that the fund will work towards opening the system over the weekend but will ensure that it is completely stable before re-opening for June applications.

Contact our legislation team at info@crs.co.za if you require any additional information.
© 2020 C
RS Technologies (Pty)Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Nicol Myburgh

Taking care of staff in a post-lockdown world

With corporate attention turning to resuming operations in a new normal following the easing of lockdown restrictions, it is important not to neglect employees’ well-being. Nicol Myburgh, Head of the HCM Business Unit at CRS Technologies, believes this transition is a critical time to reinforce the company’s commitment to addressing the physical, psychological, and financial concerns of staff.

“People are social by nature and want to interact with their colleagues. Given how remote working has become part of normal operating procedure, there is a real risk of this aspect of work being lost. If many employees are no longer required to be in a physical office, management must work with HR to implement a different approach, for example regular video calls with remote workers to find out how they are doing on a personal level,” he says.

Counting the cost

Of course, the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been significant. The introduction of the Temporary Employer and Employee Relief Scheme (TERS), designed to provide financial assistance to employees through Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) payments, has proven to be woefully inadequate. Pay-outs (when received) only cover a small portion of income, resulting in employees needing to fix a significant financial gap in their lives.

“Companies must be transparent throughout this period and clearly communicate with employees on the financial realities in which the organisation finds itself. Not many, if any, businesses will be able to afford bonuses or salary increases for the foreseeable future. HR departments need to effectively bring this message across and be the link between management and individuals on expectations for the future,” says Myburgh.

New possibilities

On the positive side, the lockdown has proven to employers that remote work is not only possible, but also eliminates the traditional geographic limitations associated with finding new staff.

“It is now possible to employ full-time staff who might not even live in the same province or country where the company is based. By doing so, the business can develop a regional and even global skills base it might not have even considered as practical prior to the lockdown. However, if an ‘international’ employee is appointed, consideration must be given to the local labour laws and whether the organisation complies with them.”

Irrespective of whether an employer works with local or international staff, a remote working environment does make it difficult to foster a sense of community among employees.

“This is where weekly social discussions become an important tool. Even if this is done virtually, it is good for the organisation to engage with employees on a social level. Beyond that, the company can send care packages to employees at home that can include everything from masks and sanitisers to chocolate and other feel-good items.

It is important to remain cognisant on the support the business provides its employees during these (and other difficult) times. These are matters which help the business become even more competitive in the future,” concludes Myburgh.

For more information, contact us: click here

Temporary Employer and Employee Relief Scheme

Temporary Employer and Employee Relief Scheme

As South Africa, along with the rest of the world, mobilises resources to battle the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there is a realisation within the labour market that it is most definitely not ‘business as usual’.

During times of emergency and threat, people look to leaders for guidance and evidence of clear thinking and deliberate, focused action.

And so we see the introduction of measures by the Department of Employment and Labour to try to contain this global healthcare crisis under the Temporary Employer and Employee Relief Scheme (TERS).

Under the scheme, the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) will compensate affected workers through the existing illness and Reduced Work Time benefits.

There is substance to this scheme and employers must take note

This is applicable to all employers who are registered with UIF and make monthly contributions as required by the Contributions Act of 2002.

There is substance to this scheme and employers must take note that in terms of the TERS process, the UIF may fund companies affected by COVID-19 directly in relation to the TERS allowance.

Additionally, the affected company will only be funded if it has complied with the relevant UIF legislation.

Should a company not be compliant, the said company must undertake to pay outstanding contributions and bring its declarations up to date within a stipulated timeframe.

We are here to help

The following applications will be considered: wage subsidy rulings, over and above wage subsidy and training intervention, and turnaround solution intervention.

CRS Technologies is a leader in HCM solutions and all labour-related matters. We are here to help. For more information or to obtain application forms, email infoTERS@labour.gov.za and info@crs.co.za

Employee declaration form

Employer declaration form

Paid parental leave - SA’s labour law progresses

Paid parental leave and how SA’s labour law progresses

From 1 January 2020 all parents – including fathers of new-born children and mothers of children born through surrogacy – will be entitled to 10 days’ paid parental leave, i.e. up to 66% from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) or their full salaries at the discretion of their employer, when their children are born.

This is a significant step forward because it reflects a labour law that is in line with requirements of the modern workforce.

We know that South African workers, across various industries and sectors, have long struggled to achieve a credible, sustainable work-life balance. Outdated legislation does not take into consideration the realities of modern family life, for example, the role played by fathers in supporting the arrival of a new baby into the family.

But change is never easy and there are direct implications for both the employee and employer.

Employers have been urged to embrace the spirit of the legislation

While employers have been urged to embrace the spirit of the legislation and could face penalties and action from labour courts should they refuse to adhere to the conditions, employees must take note that paid parental leave can be taken once a year and they must apply officially for leave from their place of employment.

The law makes provision for workers to claim payments from the UIF should the leave be unpaid by their employer.

We also know from media reports that unions like Cosatu (Congress of South African Trade Unions) have voiced their support for the law.

As custodians of HR and HCM related services and solutions, CRS Technologies is available to help.

For any more information and assistance, contact info@crs.co.za

Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) in the process of finalizing the development of systems to implement Parental and Commissioning Parental benefits

On 23 November 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the Labour Laws Amendment Bill into Act, thus effecting amendments to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and the Unemployment Insurance Act of 2001.

Although the Labour Laws Amended Act 2018 is now law, the benefits will only take effect once the president has promulgated the implementation date.

The UIF Commissioner said as Parental and Commissioning Parental benefits are new, the UIF has started to upgrade their systems, develop regulations, and design new forms for the processing of applications.

The UIF should be ready to implement these benefits by September 2019.

Some companies have started to implement parental leave in line with the Labour Laws Amendment Act; however, UIF will only start accepting applications and process payments once the president has promulgated the implementation date.

Contact our legislation team at info@crs.co.za if you require any additional information.

© 2019 CRS Technologies (Pty)Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

The digital transformation of payroll services has changed the way companies approach this integral back-office function. According to Ian McAlister, General Manager of CRS Technologies South Africa, specialised compensation and remuneration services can help with this transition.

Already, the automation of manual-intensive processes in payroll departments has resulted in staff being refocused on delivering more strategic value to an organisation.

“By taking away much of the admin-intensive functions, automation is giving people more time to review the data at their disposal and develop solutions for customers accordingly. When it comes to payroll, this value can be derived by empowering staff to develop more skills for a digital-friendly environment,” he says.

In certain respects, this more process-centric way of approaching payroll has resulted in a variety of apps and self-service tools emerge empowering organisations to do more with the technology at their disposal.

“Additionally, companies need to find increasingly innovate ways to structure compensation packages. Incentives will be driven by outcomes-based performance instead of the traditional fixed structure of either a 13th cheque, share options, and the like.”

But automation and compensation packages are just two components of a new digitally led payroll environment.

Part of the new digitalisation of payroll entails outsourcing non-core activities (think payroll administration) to specialists as a way of further improving efficiencies and reducing operating expenses. Furthermore, using the right provider, these outsourced solutions still leave the business in a position to manage and plan payroll costs, secure employee benefits, and avoid spending money on purchasing new payroll technology (this is especially relevant to cloud-based solutions that are continually updated).

“Typically, an outsourced service provider should be able to process wages and salary payrolls weekly, fortnightly or monthly. Part of this entails processing confidential and electronic payslips as well as making electronic payments to PAYE (Pay As You Earn), UIF (Unemployment Insurance Fund), and SDL (Skills Development Levy).”

Such a trusted partner would be able to manage any submissions to SARS and assist with package restructurings and any other statutory registrations.

“We live in a time where specialised payroll consultants can add immense value to any business. Their understanding (and likely innovation) of how technology is impacting these processes can fundamentally change how a business approaches this mission-critical function,” McAlister concludes.

Please feel free to contact us or visit our website for more information on taking your payroll into the digital future.

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Email: info@crs.co.za

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