We at Siyaya Skills Institute understand that with the mountain of legislation it is challenging for businesses to be compliant in all areas without assistance. In 2004 we instituted an Employment Equity desk within Siyaya to assist our clients with the Employment Equity Act compliance. We make it our business to keep abreast of all changes and developments within the Department of Labour Employment Equity framework.
Our service includes our team of consultants who provide an A to Z service including:
- Analyzing the employer’s workplace profile
- Gathering relevant information
- Aligning job titles to occupation levels
- Formulation and design the required Employment Equity Policies
- Instituting relevant procedures
- Compiling the plan
- Submission of EEA2 and EEA4 reports to the Department of Labour
- Reporting on submitted plans
- Compiling and maintenance of the Employment Equity file
- Representing the Employer in a consultative capacity during the Department of Labour’s audits
Employment Equity Act:
At Siyaya Skills Institute we partner with our customers, educating them on whether their business is affected by the Employment Equity Act. We assist clients to achieve statutory compliance through compiling, completing and submitting all the relevant reports and supporting documentation for their business.
What is the Employment Equity Act?
The Employment Equity Act was brought about as a tool to aid employers to achieve a more representative workforce through providing principals of planning, guiding policies and practices ensuring diversity in-line with the Economically Active Population statistics promoting fair and sustainable human resource processes.
Who is affected?
According to the South African Department of Labour, employers who employ more than 50 employees or have a total annual turnover that is equal and above the applicable annual turnover of a small business must prepare, and implement, an Employment Equity Plan. This plan, valid for 1 to 5 years, should achieve progress towards redressing disparities in employment. A report is then submitted annually (as from the amendment on the 16th of January 2014) detailing an employer’s progress against his/her plan.
How is an Employment Equity plan formulated?
An employer would appoint an Employment Equity Champion/Manager who would begin a consultative process with employees and representative trade unions. Through this process an Employment Equity Committee would be formed which was representative of race, gender and occupational categories. This committee would begin auditing and analyzing all employment policies and practices in the workplace outlining barriers and developing a demographic profile of the organization's workforce. The committee would then develop policies and an Employment Equity Plan on how the organization intended to overcome the barriers identified and achieve representative diversity throughout all occupational categories.
What does an Employment Equity Plan state?
An EEP must state the:
- Objectives to be achieved for each year of the plan
- Affirmative action measures to be taken
- Numerical goal to achieve equal representation of under-represented groups
- Time-table for each year of the plan
- Duration of the plan (not longer than 5 or shorter than 1)
- Procedures used to monitor and evaluate the plan
- Internal procedures to resolve any dispute about implementation of plan
- Persons responsible for monitoring plan
What does an Employment Equity Report include?
The EE Report must be submitted to the Department of Labour on 1 October annually (manual submission) or by 16 January (online submission). The submission would include an EEA2 (workplace profile) and an EEA4 (income differential) report and would outline an employer’s progress with regards to overall representation and income differential by occupational categories, race and gender.
Turn-over threshold applicable to designated employers:
FINES: If a company has been found guilty of contravening the Employment Equity Act (No. 55 of 1998), maximum fines will be imposed in line with the table below:
What happens if your business does not comply?
Should your business not comply with the procedural compilation of the Employment Equity Report and Plan (Sections 16, 17, 19, 22, 24, 25 & 26) then an inspector may issue a Written Undertaking (EEA5) allowing an employer 2 weeks to correct the shortcomings highlighted. If by the end of this 2 week grace period no progress has been made, a further 3 weeks would be granted under a Compliance Order (EEA6). Again, should an employer fail to comply an application would be made by the Department of Labour to the Labour Court to issue a fine. In either of the aforementioned instances and employer would be placed under Director General Review and required to submit an EEA7.
In the event that an employer fails to comply with section 20 (Submission of an Employment Equity Plan) or 21 (Submission of an Employment Equity Report) then the inspector (under the amendments Gazette No. 10241 of 1 August 2014) may skip the Written Undertaking and Compliance Order and proceed to the Labour Court to issue a fine.