Human Resource

Quick job moves never look good on a CV and will always be questioned by an employer, but staying in a job too long can indicate you lack the ambition to take on new challenges and new environments.

For businesses, the issue of who has access to premises and data has reached new levels of importance. Non-intrusive biometric systems, which measure handwriting, fingerprints, voices, faces and retinas, offer fraud-proof control.

You have to complete a Workplace Skills Plan for your skills initiatives but it shouldn't replace a strategic skills development plan, says Sarah Babb of The Skills Framework. While you have to be aware of the short-term details of how many people have been trained, and who they are, the long-term strategy for the development of staff is just as important.

The Department of Labour is awaiting judgements from the Durban Labour Court which could see two KZN clothing firms fined for failure to comply with the Employment Equity Act. Coming soon after the Department decided to 'name and shame' companies which it claimed had not submitted EE reports, the judgements will be the first court decisions on the Act and indicate a firmer approach to enforcement by the Labour Department.

Cathie Webb from Accsys, has been re-elected to the executive board of the South African Payroll Association (SAPA) - the body that promotes excellence and high standards within the Payroll Administration profession. Top of the agenda for the association is the development of NQF level three standards to help train school leavers in obtaining competence in basic payroll administration functions.

The Employment Equity Commission (EEC) insists that it correctly identified companies it said had failed to comply with employment equity reporting procedures and warned that evaders would be charged with fraud.

The Labour Department claims that the national Parliament has failed to submit an Employment Equity report for 2005. They are in good company, with the Office of the Premier Gauteng, The City of Tshwane and the Director of Public Prosecutions all alleged to have failed to comply. Parliament has strongly denied the Department's claims and others could be following soon.

We do we engage in internal communicaitons? To drive behaviour: behaviour that makes money, retains customers, sells more products, improves operational efficiency, increases collaboration or delivers on our brand promise, and if we?re smart, all of these. And usually the HR department has to do that on top of everything else on their plate. Terri Brown from Actuate has some good advice.

The Minister of Labour has announced that, for the first time his Department will invoke a section of the Employment Equity Act that allows the Director-General to review the progress of identified employers against the requirements of the Act. Alan Hammond writes that rather than simply submitting reports, employers will now be expected to make actual progress!

'Throwing the cat among the pigeons' hardly seems to encompass the controversy emanating from the Minister of Labour, Membathisi Mdladlana's speech at the launch of the 6th Commission for Employment Equity Annual Report. We have the speech in full.

Controversy surrounds the list of more than 1200 companies that the Department of Labour claim have not submitted Employment Equity reports as required under the Act. However many of those names have hit back claiming that they have submitted the required reports - and some have the receipts to prove it! Download the full list here.

Labour Minister, Membathisi Mdladlana, has, for the first time, named six top large companies that have failed to implement the Employment Equity Act. "The fact that we have mentioned certain companies is a major step to achieve compliance. We have taken a deliberate step to name and shame those that drag their feet," Mdladlana said.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.


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