Human Resource

Many HR practitioners have advanced successfully to the role of HR Director, on the basis of their formal knowledge and qualifications. Is this sufficient to meet the requirements of their organisations and the economy?

A new board for the SA Board for Personnel Practice has been appointed and a number of decisions taken that will allow additional job functions to be registered with the body. Skills Development Facilitator has been recognised as a new professional category and Employment Relations practitioners will now also be recognised.

A "paradigm shift on the part of those who still have control of the economy' is needed to draw more women into economic activity, says Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka. She identified education as one of the most important elements in the empowerment of women in South Africa and calling for more to be done to advance women in business.

Gloria Maloka, a bus driver with the Bojanala bus service, was the overall winner in the national woman bus driver competition that was held in Nelspruit last year and will now be going to Luxemburg to compete in the world bus driving competition.

Technology, particularly mobile and wireless, has encouraged a fresh approach to career development within a new generation of employee - one that prioritizes balance between job responsibilities and life outside the office. But how does management control this more flexible working environment? Technology could provide the answer.

Businesses should be investing in ongoing employee training as part of retaining knowledge capital, enhancing HR management and increasing productivity. Various options are available, including virtual tuition or eLearning, and learnerships.

Succession planning should be a strategic imperative to every business. The outdated approach involved only senior management. Today, succession planning should involve all staff tiers, balancing personal career aspirations with organisational needs, says Des Squire.

"The largest problem is still the lack of skills and experience amongst historically disadvantaged individuals, and companies are forced to lower their standards or requirements to fill these positions. Employ people as apprentices or on learnerships. That is how skills traditionally were developed," writes Riette Waite-Sage.

Recruiters and headhunters are increasingly wary of people interested solely in large pay cheques. "Obviously headhunted candidates would not be expected to take a pay cut and may assume some kind of extra package incentive to move, but from the headhunter's point of view, a move should never be motivated solely by money."

Following the recent blitz inspections in the Free State, the labour department?s employment equity inspectors will be setting their sights on financial institutions in the northern Gauteng region.

A new electronic payslip service allows for payslips to be emailed to employees. This means no more hassles with payslip delivery! There are a host of benefits embedded in this technology, not least of which is the fact that companies can use their existing e-mail infrastructure and need not re-invest in a new technology," says Teryl Schroenn, MD at Accsys.

In episode three of our series on Employment Equity we look at the link to skills development. Skills development is integral to the redress of past discrimination and the implementation of Workplace Skills Plans should be integrated with the employment equity activities.

How will your business expand globally if your current human resources are not even carrying the load of production or delivery? How will you transform into an high tech-high knowledge innovative business, when your current people are low skill- low tech? Skills Framework MD, Sarah Babb, explores the role that HR practitioners should play to add real value to their businesses.

Justice and Constitutional Development Minister Brigette Mabandla, says there is a need for an intervention to promote and increase equal opportunities in the legal sector. The minister believes that at present the sector is characterised by the marginalisation of black lawyers with the most profitable and successful law firms being owned by white people.

Reserve Bank Governor Tito Mboweni explains that the organisation is making good progress with its Employment Equity profile, despite the fact that staff turnover has increased. Despite many black staff members being poached, the Reserve Bank has reached levels of 43% black managers and 36% female managers.

Is the national HR Council, HRCosa, still appropriate for the needs of the field and the practitioners working in its various functions? The meeting called by Association president Shaun Schwanzer to chart the way ahead will now be held on Thursday the 31st of August.

Employment equity plans and reports are not documents that are simply drawn up by management. The Employment Equity Act requires that designated employers establish committees and consult with employees. We explore the issues that these committees should be involved with.

There are five key standard questions for recruitment managers to gain the best understanding of job candidates and to weed out those who are unacceptable risks.

The Correctional Services department and the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) have ended a deadlock involving a dress code dispute which saw the suspension of a Muslim social worker.

The Department of Labour in the Free State has embarked on a series of aggressive workplace blitz inspections to check employers? compliance with Employment Equity laws.

Are you thinking of a significant career change? More and more South Africans are looking at this option, but it is something that employers don't generally support. Debbie Goodman says that expecting the same, or more money in a new career is overly optimistic. You are more likely to have to take a pay cut for that 180-degree career change.

The Department of Labour has started inspections to ensure compliance with Employment Equity legislation by designated employers. Your company could be a designated employer either by having more than 50 employees or by having a turnover considered above the limit for SMEs in your sector. If you are a designated employer for the first time we've outlined the first steps to take to ensure compliance.

When you take on a new employee are you happy for them to take a few months to learn the ropes - or would you like them to become efficient as soon as possible? Some time spent on day one taking a new recruit through a formal induction process will pay dividends later on says Teryl Schroenn.

Initial outcomes of the ongoing workplace blitz inspections in the Free State show that some employers in the financial services sector have been caught off guard, while a big majority of others received a thumbs-up.

Time theft happens daily and can have a crippling affect on the bottom line. The theft of a company?s time, by employees means a loss in productivity and a financial cost to a business. An asset therefore becomes a liability and urgent, direct control measures need to be implemented. Teryl Schroenn has the answer.

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