Employment Tax Incentive

It has come to our attention that there appears to be inaccurate information circulating with regards to the Employment Tax Incentive (ETI) that was negotiated at NEDLAC and agreed to under the Jobs Summit Agreement .  The inaccurate information is to the effect that the ETI has been increased to earnings of R8000.00 and age increased to 35 years from 1 April 2019.

BUSA confirmed with National Treasury, and referenced the relevant legislative provision – the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill - passed by the National Assembly yesterday (refer to page 54). Both the current age limit (up to 30 years of age) applicable to ETI and the monetary limit of R6000 remain unchanged, but the ETI applicability has been extended to 1 January 2029 as per the Jobs Summit Agreement.

The ETI is the only direct employment incentive in South Africa. The extension of the time period of application of the ETI to 10 years is a positive step. It creates the necessary stability in the short and medium term for businesses to enhance the use of the incentive in order to promote employment of young people. It is also a sufficient period for smaller businesses to take up the opportunity if they may not have already done so due to the short duration of the previous incentive.

Should you require any further clarity or information please do not hesitate to contact SEIFSA’s HC&SD team for assistance on 011 298 9400.


Bursaries and Scholarships

The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (SEIFSA) continues to support and facilitate the development, availability and retention of skilled human capital directly related to the Steel and Engineering Sectors’ activities.

In terms of the SEIFSA Bursary Policy preference primarily relates to employers and employees within the ambit of the steel and engineering manufacturing sector who are affiliated to Associations federated to SEIFSA, however this does not preclude applications from eligible persons falling outside the ambit of the steel and engineering sector. Preference however will be given to applicants who are employed and/or are dependents of employees working in the sector.

SEIFSA awards bursaries each year for those entering an institution of higher education, and pursuing careers that will benefit the Steel and Engineering Industry. Bursaries are awarded annually to eligible students registered for approved undergraduate Engineering programmes at South African Universities as well as students studying towards a National Diploma in Engineering at Universities of Technology (UoT).

Through this scheme SEIFSA promotes balance and diversity in the skills pool of graduates by encouraging previously disadvantaged individuals to seek assistance through our SEIFSA Bursary programme.

Bursaries are awarded in the following fields of study at a relevant institution of higher learning.

  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electronics Engineering
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metallurgical Engineering
  • SEIFSA’s Bursary is only for students taking full-time courses in one of the above mentioned courses, is paid per annum and is awarded in the first instance for a one year period only.

The bursary amount covers all or forms part of the cost for tuition fees only. Prescribed books/stationery, residence and meals as well as private accommodation and extra-mural activities will not be covered by the SEIFSA bursary.

The application window will open on the 1st of November 2018 and close on the 30th of November 2018.  Applications outside of the application window for the 2019 academic year will not be considered.

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For more information please contact:

Michelle Norris
Human Capital and Skills Development Executive
Tel:011 298 9425
Fax: 011 298 9525
Email: bursayapplications@seifsa.co.za


Employment Equity: May the Force Be with you – The Serious Consequences of the Employment Equity Act

“Don’t put it off”, that’s the warning from SEIFSA to its members and all other companies within the Metals and Engineering Sector.

The Department of Labour has ramped up its enforcement mechanisms in a concerted effort to force compliance with the country’s labour laws. Although busy, with companies fulfilling the last orders for the year or trying to make targets with one last push, the October-December period is also the time to compile and submit Employment Equity Reports online.

The harsh reality is that The Department of Labour’s (DoL’s) deadline looms large on 15 January 2019; with the Metals and Engineering Sector, amongst others, shutting down towards the middle of December until the second week in January, companies cannot afford to be caught short. Human Resource professionals must lead the charge because the Department can impose – and has previously imposed – fines of R1.5 million.

“We are here to help,” says SEIFSA Human Capital and Skills Development Executive Melanie Mullholland. “Our auditing, training and consulting services are personal and can really enable the focus of a company’s reporting capability. We prepare you for exactly what the Department of Labour is looking for”.

SEIFSA’s support speaks directly to our mission: the Federation needs to ensure that its member companies have the tools to transform themselves so that companies can focus on their core business.

Transformation makes business sense,” says Ms Mulholland.

During the launch of the 18th Employment Equity Report, Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant had this to say:

The trouble is that, broadly speaking, we are not making much progress.  There are times when one feels that even the EE Plans are put together grudgingly, with no real will to implement them.  Twenty years since the Employment Equity Act was introduced, there is not much to show for it.The word “grudgingly” and the phrase “no real will” should worry businesses. It speaks to the Government’s perceived attitude of business. It also demonstrates why there is a renewed appetite for ensuring compliance.

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“All of us must commit to transformation; we simply must lift our respective games, especially in the Metals and Engineering sector”, says Mullholland.

“We are resolute about scaling up inspection and enforcement and targeting those areas that will give us the bigger impact”, said Minister Oliphant.

In October 2018 the Department of Labour’s Employment Equity Directorate embarked on Employment Equity roadshows in the form of Public Hearings throughout the country. Its focus is on the amendments to Section 53 (the ability to trade with Government) and proposed sectorial targets, contained in the Employment Equity Act Amendment Bill and the Draft Regulations released in September 2018. SEIFSA strongly recommends that Sections 24 Managers, Human Resource (HR) practitioners, especially those in the Metals and Engineering Sector, attend these hearings to ensure that they stay fully informed of the requirements and implications for businesses that do not comply.

In the meantime, let’s begin with what your company needs to start doing immediately.

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THE BASICS

  1. Designated employers that employ 50 or more employees or have an annual turnover that exceeds or equals the amounts in schedule 4 of the EEA.
  2. For the Manufacturing Sector, the threshold is R30 million.
  3. Check the process below
  4. Communicate and Consultwith the workforce;
  5. Establish a committee representative of all occupational levels;
  • Conduct an analysis to ensure a Review all Policies and any potential barriers;
  1. Prepare an Employment Equity Plan and Monitor and Evaluate targets against Goals.
  2. Submit the Reportonline on or before 15 January.
  3. It is vitally important to follow the practices set out above as it mitigates risk and gives your company a better chance to be compliant. Non-compliance to this Act attracts fines and penalties.
  4. The Department of Labour’s (DoL’s) online portal for EmploymentEquity submissions is open – CEOs and Section 24 Managers receive an activation code from DoL to access the portal.

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SECTION 53: Alert! Your business’s ability to trade with Government is at Risk

The amendments, particularly Section 53, should make the Metals and Engineering Industry stand to attention.

Even though you may have long-standing contracts with Government Departments and related entities, your business will now need a Department of Labour (DoL) certificate to prove compliance with the Employment Equity Act. This could effectively see many in the industry potentially missing out on lucrative infrastructure projects under way or being planned, such as those announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa as part of the stimulus package.

Those who are ready and compliant will have an enormous advantage of other businesses that are lagging behind.

“This is the ‘carrot’ that must incentivize the industry to get its house in order. It certainly adds weight to the phrase that transformation is good for business,” says Ms Mulholland.

SEIFSA plans to play a pivotal role in getting the Metals and Engineering Sector ready for this new reality. Through its relationship with the Department of Labour, its advice, training, consultation and audits will be strategic tools for members of the Federation and the industry in general.

Trying to achieve employment equity and BBBEE targets in the absence of an integrated employment equity and diversity management strategy could be one of the main reasons for the lack of progress in the industry. There is too much at stake, so don’t waste time – and don’t be left behind because transformation makes business sense.

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HCSD Inhouse Training

The following workshops can be run in-house and customised to meet company needs:

  • Training Committee Training
  • Skills Development Update
  • Supervisory Training
  • Supervisory Workshop: Problem Solving for Supervisors
  • Performance Management
  • Needs Analysis and Skills Audits
  • Change Management
  • Talent Management and Succession Planning

SEIFSA’s HC&SD team can conduct in-house training:
Interactive Skills Development/ Training Committee Training to gain a clear understanding of all the relevant applicable legislation and more specifically the roles and responsibilities of Training Committee Members. This workshop enables committee members to become more effective and efficient in supporting the company’s Skills Development objectives as well as advancing consultation regarding the submissions of the Workplace Skills Plan, Annual Training Report, PIVOTAL Plan and PIVOTAL Training Report to the relevant SETA.

Employment Equity Committee Training for nominated representatives to comprehend their roles and responsibilities as members of the Employment Equity/Transformation Committee with specific regards to the requirements of the Act, Codes of Good Practice and includes and outline for the compilation of an annual plan and report, ensuring that targets and goals are aligned to Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment and Skills Development requirements.

 

PROFILE

MELANIE MULHOLLAND
HUMAN CAPITAL AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE
melanie@seifsa.co.za

Melanie Mulholland joined SEIFSA in 2010 and is the Human Capital and Skills Development Executive. She is an extremely passionate and dedicated human capital and skills development professional with more than 20 years' experience in training and development.

She is a registered HR Professional with SABPP and with ASDSA. Melanie holds a BA Degree in Human and Social Sciences. She also has a higher certificate – Leadership Development Programme from GIBS as well as numerous professional training qualifications.

MICHELLE NORRIS
HUMAN CAPITAL AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER
michelle@seifsa.co.za

Michelle Norris is the Human Capital and Skills Development Manager at SEIFSA. Michelle is an extreme motivator a natural team builder facilitator and transformation leader. She is customer centric and a person driven by passion, excellence, tenacity and outcomes. She is a human capital Professional with 14 years’ experience in Human Capital and Skills Development on Management level. She has ten years’ experience within the Metal and Engineering industry. Michelle holds a B Comm in Human Resources a Post Graduate Diploma in Labour Law.  She has previous experience in Investment Finance. Michelle also holds various accredited certificates within her field of expertise.

 

MORE INFORMATION

Visit our website on www.seifsa.co.za or call Michelle Morris (011) 298-9425 or michelle@seifsa.co.za
for tailor-made in-house training or consulting


Artisans of the 21st century

Artisans of the 21st century

Demand-driven apprenticeships are a win-win in increasing the employment prospects of unemployed young people and closing the ever-increasing skills gap, but companies have to enable this process, writes Melanie Mulholland.

South Africa’s youth unemployment is at its lowest level for five years, but there are still major concerns about the long-term job prospects for the young. According to a new report issued by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), South Africa ranks sixth globally in terms of youth unemployment, with a current rate of 52.5%. Vocational interventions, like apprenticeships, are a much-needed solution for South Africa to prevent long-term negative impact.
Participating in apprenticeships is one of the many ways in which employers can acquire and develop the skills they need, while improving the employability of the younger generation.

Emplaoyers articulate their skills needs and identify skills mismatches in their respective sectors with the end game of job creation. Employers have to be in the driver’s seat throughout the entire process, from consultation through to trade test implementation, in order to create successful 21st-century artisans.
Such holistic engagement by companies would enable and support quality apprenticeship programmes that address pertinent skills gaps which need to be closed. At the same time, it would support a committed and productive workforce that can add value. This would open up a pool of skills and pathways for new talent into companies, occupations and sectors.

Many employers immediately understand the benefits of taking on apprentices and recover the costs of their investment as early as the second year of the duration of apprenticeships.
Apprenticeships focused on the 21st century consist of three components: a theoretical component, a practical (simulated) component and a workplace learning component. This is a dual apprenticeship model. This mode of delivery combines learning in the workplace with learning at a Technical Vocational and Education College (TVET) in an integrated programme. This programme is now being referred to as the Artisan of the 21st Century or A21 apprenticeship.

In order to deliver A21 programmes, the involvement of employers is a fundamental pre-requisite. As part of this training, an apprentice undergoes national trade testing at an accredited trade test centre after completion of required theory, practical and workplace training requirements, further certifying them for their skills.
While on qualification and recognition of learning, we need to be cognizant that South Africa has a history of placing a higher value on the academic pathway from school to university. In recent years, it has become more evident that this pathway does not fit everybody and, now more than ever, it is vital that as a country we develop high-quality vocational pathways that acquire the same respect that other educational choices receive. It is often a fact that qualified apprentices often earn more than their university counterparts.

Quality training is a unanimous trait that many employers from various sectors are demanding, especially in the manufacturing and engineering sectors. Businesses are overwhelmingly positive about 21st century apprenticeships and understand that work-based training can, indeed, boost much-needed skills and productivity – as well as the career prospects of young people. While the government is right to turn the spotlight on apprenticeships, I believe it is wrong to focus on numbers put through rather than the quality of apprenticeships.

South Africa’s target, according to the National Development Plan, is to deliver more than 30 000 additional artisans every year until 2024. This target has plenty of associated risks in undermining the combined efforts that are in place to increase the profile of apprenticeships. The focus on achieving this arbitrary figure would lead to a robotic model, where apprenticeships come out of a production line and yet quality suffers. This, in turn, would end up with apprenticeships continuing to be seen as an inferior alternative to attending universities and institutions of technology.

To add to this, apprenticeships are expensive. The best and perhaps only way to encourage companies to take on apprentices is to increase their quality and relevance to business. If the quality is there, then the demand, from both employers and potential apprentices, will naturally follow.
In order to increase the take-up among businesses, the government has to ensure that, when it comes to apprenticeships, the focus is on quality rather than quantity. Only then can we forge a credible alternative to the academic pathway, which businesses and young people can fully buy into.
In addition, at the moment TVETs and accredited training providers offer a network of support for apprentices. Without the right level of support, we risk seeing more young people dropping out of the system. We need to advocate an “earn-while-you-learn” incentive since skilled workers are increasingly in demand.
As part of meeting quality and completion numbers, the youth should not be disillusioned by the minimum requirements and technical aptitude tests. The system should ensure that the right attitude and skills for learning a trade are determined upfront in the recruitment and selection process and that the employer is assured the right candidate will become a 21st-century artisan.

The question, then, is: why should the youth choose an apprenticeship over an academic university pathway? It is evident, especially in manufacturing, that the economy desperately needs 21st-century artisans ranging from welders, electricians, plumbers, riggers, fitters to boilermakers, among many others.
Corporate South Africa, specifically the manufacturing and engineering sectors, have started addressing some of the real challenges around apprenticeships and artisan development to achieve quality artisans for the 21st century.

Without apprenticeships leading to quality artisans, our prospects for a growing economy and meeting the need to provide jobs for the millions of unemployed young people will remain depressing. Apprenticeships and skills are becoming very attractive because of their demand and the high likelihood of getting a job upon completion.

Melanie Mulholland is the Human Capital and Skills Development Executive at SEIFSA, which owns the SEIFSA Training Centre in Benoni.


A win-win solution to unemployment

 

By Melanie Mulholland

Demand-driven apprenticeships are a win-win in increasing the employment prospects of unemployed young people and closing the ever-increasing skills gap, but companies have to enable this process.

South Africa’s youth unemployment is at its lowest level for five years, but there are still major concerns about the long-term job prospects for the young.

According to a new report issued by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), South Africa ranks sixth globally in terms of youth unemployment, with a rate of 52.5 percent. Vocational interventions, like apprenticeships, are a much-needed solution for South Africa to prevent a long-term negative impact.

Participating in apprenticeships is one of the many ways in which employers can acquire and develop the skills they need, while improving the employability of the younger generation.

Employers’ end game

Employers articulate their skills needs and identify skills mismatches in their respective sectors with the end game of job creation. Employers have to be in the driver’s seat throughout the entire process, from consultation through to trade test implementation, in order to create successful 21st-century artisans.

Such holistic engagement by companies would enable and support quality apprenticeship programmes that address pertinent skills gaps which need to be closed. At the same time, it would support a committed and productive workforce that can add value. This would open up a pool of skills and pathways for new talent into companies, occupations and sectors.

Many employers immediately understand the benefits of taking on apprentices and recover the costs of their investment as early as the second year of the duration of apprenticeships.

Apprenticeships focused on the 21st century consist of three components: a theoretical component, a practical (simulated) component and a workplace learning component. This is a dual apprenticeship model. This mode of delivery combines learning in the workplace with learning at a Technical Vocational and Education College (TVET) in an integrated programme. This programme is now being referred to as the Artisan of the 21st Century or A21 apprenticeship.

In order to deliver A21 programmes, the involvement of employers is a fundamental pre-requisite. As part of this training, an apprentice undergoes national trade testing at an accredited trade test centre after completion of required theory, practical and workplace training requirements, certifying them for their skills.

While on qualification and recognition of learning, we need to be cognisant that South Africa has a history of placing a higher value on the academic pathway from school to university. In recent years, it has become more evident that this pathway does not fit everybody and, now more than ever, it is vital that as a country we develop high-quality vocational pathways that acquire the same respect that other educational choices. It is often a fact that qualified apprentices often earn more than their university counterparts.

Quality training is a unanimous trait that many employers from various sectors are demanding, especially in the manufacturing and engineering sectors. Businesses are overwhelmingly positive about 21st century apprenticeships and understand that work-based training can, indeed, boost much-needed skills and productivity - as well as the career prospects of young people. While the government is right to turn the spotlight on apprenticeships, I believe it is wrong to focus on numbers put through rather than the quality of apprenticeships.

South Africa’s target, according to the National Development Plan, is to deliver more than 30000 additional artisans every year until 2024. This target has plenty of associated risks in undermining the combined efforts in place to increase the profile of apprenticeships. The focus on achieving this arbitrary figure would lead to a robotic model, where apprenticeships come out of a production line and quality suffers. This, in turn, would end up with apprenticeships continuing to be seen as an inferior alternative to attending universities and institutions of technology.

To add to this, apprenticeships are expensive. The best and perhaps only way to encourage companies to take on apprentices is to increase their quality and relevance to business. If the quality is there then demand, from employers and potential apprentices, will naturally follow.

In order to increase the take-up among businesses, the government has to ensure that, when it comes to apprenticeships, the focus is on quality rather than quantity. Only then can we forge a credible alternative to the academic pathway, which businesses and young people can fully buy into.

Read also: SA's unemployment figures paint gloomy picture

In addition, at the moment TVETs and accredited training providers offer a network of support for apprentices. Without the right level of support, we risk seeing more young people dropping out of the system. We need to advocate an “earn-while-you-learn” incentive since skilled workers are increasingly in demand.

As part of meeting quality and completion numbers, the youth should not be disillusioned by the minimum requirements and technical aptitude tests.

The system should ensure that the right attitude and skills for learning a trade are determined upfront in the recruitment and selection process and that the employer is assured the right candidate will become a 21st-century artisan.

Need for artisans

The question, then, is: why should the youth choose an apprenticeship over an academic university pathway? It is evident, especially in manufacturing, that the economy desperately needs 21st-century artisans ranging from welders, electricians, plumbers, riggers, fitters to boilermakers, among many others.

Corporate South Africa, specifically the manufacturing and engineering sectors, have started addressing some of the real challenges around apprenticeships and artisan development to achieve quality artisans for the 21st century.

Without apprenticeships leading to quality artisans, our prospects for a growing economy and meeting the need to provide jobs for the millions of unemployed young people will remain depressing.

Apprenticeships and skills are becoming very attractive because of their demand and the high likelihood of getting a job upon completion.

Melanie Mulholland is the Human Capital and Skills Development Executive at Seifsa, which owns the Seifsa Training Centre in Benoni.


About Human Capital & Skills Development

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SEIFSA Human Capital & Skills Development Services

SEIFSA’s Human Capital & Skills Development Division entrenches its service proposition in recognition of the fact that employees are the cornerstones of the competitive edge in creating sustainable and profitable companies.

HUMAN CAPITAL AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT DIVISION

The HC & SD Division plays a major role in coordinating the views of business and lobbying for employer-friendly policies at strategic national, provincial and sectoral levels.

Some of the bodies we are represented on are

  • BUSA (Social and Transformation Policy Committee),
  • Centers of Specilaisation (DHET Project)
  • merSETA (Accounting Authority and Metal Chamber),
  • Human Resources Development Council (HRDC Champion),
  • National Artisan Development Advisory Body (NADAB)
  • SASCE (Board)

The above representation ideally positions SEIFSA to provide the following services to our member companies:

  • Consult with companies on all merSETA-related matters
  • Assistance with Employment Equity and BBEEE related matters
  • Updates on SARS Tax incentives and benefits
  • Regular updates on skills development and human capital legislation, regulations and compliance e.g. Amendments to the BCEA, Employment Equity, Skills Development Act, BBBEE, etc.
  • Keep our member companies abreast of “best practice” in the human capital and skills development space.

Our team of Human Capital & Skills Development experts are also able to assist with the following product offerings at competitive membership rates:

  • All training related to skills development strategy and compliance
  • Unit standard aligned supervisory training, problem solving, communication and interpersonal skills
  • Needs analysis and skills audits
  • All training related to Employment Equity Committees
  • EE compliance Audits
  • Performance management
  • Talent management and succession planning
  • Change management
  • Business consulting in the skills development and human capital environment
  • Customized training solutions in all areas of the human capital value chain.

HC & SD workshops

  • Introduction to Skills Development
  • Labour SDF Training to Labour/Union/Employee

Representative Training

  • Needs analysis for organisational performance
  • SARS Tax incentives and benefits breakfast
  • Skills Development Planning and Reporting
  • Skills Development Updates (Landscape and Strategy)
  • Supervisory Training Workshop (unit standard aligned)
  • Training Committee Training
  • Employment Equity Committee Training
  • Diversity Training
  • Unravelling Change, Performance

MORE INFORMATION

Visit our website on www.seifsa.co.za or call Michelle Morris (011) 298-9425 or michelle@seifsa.co.za

for tailor-made in-house training or consulting


Gender Transformation Improves Bottom Line

Gender Transformation Improves Bottom Line

By Melanie Mulholland, Human Capital and Skills Development Executive at SEIFSA.

 

Gender transformation, particularly in the metals and engineering sector is very slow. According to research findings issued by the Department of Labour through the 2016 Commission for Employment Equity Report, white males continue to dominate top and senior management levels in the metals and engineering sector.

In the 16th annual report, the analysis of the “Workforce profile for Manufacturing by race and gender” compared 2014 and 2015 statistics. It found that there was a slight increase in the representation of women of all races at the top management level. At the same time, African and Indian men managed to have a slight increase in their representation at this level, while there was a decrease of white men. The number of coloured men remained constant. The professionally qualified level indicated that the representation of whites in the manufacturing sector has decreased by 2.3%. There was a continued reduction of whites and Indian males at the skilled technical level in the manufacturing sector and a 0.2% decrease of African women, while their African men increased by 1% during the same period.

Formidable gender gap

Talent is critical to staying competitive, but despite the growing number of qualified women in the workforce in all areas, the female talent pool continues to remain underutilised. This is a worldwide phenomenon in which women in business continue to face a formidable gender gap in senior, leadership positions. The barriers too are well known: a mix of cultural factors, ingrained mindsets and stubborn forms of behavior, including a tendency to tap a much narrower band of women leaders than is possible given the available talent pool. However, data also showed that including at least three women on company Boards improves the tone and responsibility of Boards.

A 2015 report by the African Development Bank on “Women Board Directors of Africa’s Top Listed Companies” found that women hold 12.7% of Board Directorships (364 out of 2,865) in 307 listed companies based in 12 African countries. This is 4.6% lower than the 17.3% women representation on the Boards of the 200 largest companies globally. Kenya (19,8%) has the highest percentage of women Board Directors, followed by South Africa (17,4%), Botswana (16,9%) and Zambia (15,7%).

The paucity of women directors is due, to some extent, to companies’ lack of understanding of the necessity for and benefits of diverse Boards.

In South Africa, women currently hold less than four percent of CEO positions in JSE-listed companies. According to Carmen Le Grange, PwC Partner in Advisory Services: “Companies that are actively promoting and advancing women to the highest levels of management and leadership tend to have more engaged Boards, with a greater diversity of talent and wealth”.

Impacting bottom line

Recent research found that companies with the highest percentage of women on Boards also tend to outperform those with lower percentages of women on Boards. This includes higher returns on sale, a greater return on invested capital and a higher return on equity.
There is now a plethora of over 30 studies undertaken by academics, women’s groups, management consulting firms and accounting and investment firms from different countries showing a correlation between more women in senior corporate leadership roles and a company’s better financial performance. Ample research has shown that the impact of women on Boards takes effect when women are no longer solitary figures on otherwise all-male Boards. When three or more women directors serve on the same Board, women’s voices are more likely heard and boardroom dynamics change substantially.

The three South African companies with a quarter of their Boards comprised of women include Barclays Africa Group (which is chaired by a woman, Wendy Lucas-Bull, and who’s CEO is also a woman, Maria Ramos), consumer goods company Tiger Brands and telecommunications company Vodacom.

Need for legislation

The 2015 report by Women Board Directors of Africa’s Top Listed Companies further highlights that South Africa has succeeded, since 2005, in ensuring that at least 30% women Directors serve on the Boards of its State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs). The 2012 Business Women’s Association (BWA) Census actually recorded 33% women’s representation on SOE Boards, proving that this government mandate has been effective.

The law, however, does not cover listed companies. As a result, without a similar framework, the percentage of women Directors on the country’s blue chip index, the JSE40, has stalled at 17.4%.

To address this issue and other areas of gender equity, there is now proposed legislation introduced by the Ministry of Women, Children, and People with Disabilities to “establish a legislative framework for the empowerment of women; to align all aspects of laws and implementation of laws relating to women empowerment, and the appointment and representation of women in decision making positions and structures.” The Women Empowerment and Gender Equality Bill calls for equal representation (50%) on boards of all public and private corporations. If passed as currently written, all companies – listed, private, and state-owned – would have to provide a plan for increasing the percentage of women Board Directors towards 50%.

Beyond gender equity laws, there is actually an existing South African legislative initiative which provides a door to the inclusion of women in corporate leadership. The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (“B-BBEE”) Act, passed in 2003 and revised in 2013, gives points to companies with black Directors and extra points for black female Directors. At the senior management level, the revised Act sets a compliance target for senior management at 60% black and 30% black female. Any company seeking government contracts, whether at a provincial or national level, is evaluated on the basis of its score on Black Empowerment Code measures. Consequently, the B-BBEE provides a financial incentive for companies to advance black females onto Boards and senior leadership and could serve as a model for legislation in other countries to accelerate gender diversity on Boards for all women.

Pay gap

PwC’s 2014 “Executive Directors’ Remuneration” report showed that at Board, level the gap between male and female Executive Directors widens according to industry type. The report also indicated that more effective work needs to be done to achieve better representation of women on Boards. Gender equality at management level has tended to remain flat at about 24% since 2009. According to the report, without proactive support at Board level, in another five years organisations that do not mainstream women may find that there are even fewer female leaders in decision-making positions.

It is also interesting to note that 23% of male senior executives and senior managers were paid in the upper quartile of the market, while only 2.3% of females were paid at the same level, according to research carried out by PwC’s REMchannel® on-line survey.

2013 Tax Statistics issued by the National Treasury and the South African Revenue Service (SARS) show that women accounted for 43.6% of the assessed individual taxpayers, had an average taxable income of R167 489 and were liable for tax of R27 980 at an effective rate of 16.7%. On the other hand, men had an average taxable income of R225 919 and were liable for tax of R50 100 at an effective rate of 22.2%.

Boardroom diversity

The matter of Boardroom diversity in the context of increasing the number of women sitting on Boards is a global phenomenon and not unique to South Africa. In the US women hold only 11% of Board seats at the world’s largest and most well-known companies, with little progress being made on gender diversity for more than a decade.

Diversity and inclusion must become a Boardroom imperative and norm. Under-representation of women is not new – it is a matter which gets ignored in the business world. There are those who say that women “unintentionally hold themselves back” in their careers, meaning that they don’t allow their voices to be heard in the business world. Others contend that women’s lifestyles change the outcome of their professional careers. PwC’s “Women in Work” index shows that in countries where there is a more equal proportion of women to men in executive positions, both mothers and fathers share the workload of raising a family and promote a healthier work/life balance for both genders.

King Code of Governance

“The King Code of Governance Principles” and the “King Report on Governance for South Africa” (known as King III) published in 2009 also mentions gender as a factor to be considered in appointing Directors. The Code recommends that a Board consider “whether its size, diversity and demographics make it effective” and lists gender as one of the factors of diversity (Section 71). As a whole, the King Code has strong guidelines regarding nominations and corporate governance principles, but the language regarding gender diversity lacks force and has not been as effective in increasing the number of women Board Directors.

Empower more women

There is no quick fix: the pace of transformation has been slow and more needs to be done by the business world to address transformation to change the culture of building a diverse workforce. Businesses and policymakers have a vital role to play in addressing the needs of female employees in a variety of areas and diversity goals. Businesses need to empower more women to step up and be counted and included for their knowledge, talent and skills and what they can bring to the business when they are placed in high-level positions.

Let’s provide opportunities to ensure women get the experience they require to be appointed to senior positions on Boards. These could include work-integrated learning training, executive coaching, mentoring and sponsorship programmes, to name a few.

At this rate, it will take many years for equitable representation in the labour


Alliance Partners

Company Scope Name Email Address Telephone
Cato & Associates SDF Services Cobus Cato catosdfservices@gmail.com 072 910 9999
Emergence Human Capital HR Assistance Raun Smythe rauns@emergencegrowth.com 011 026 3442 / 082 442 8686
Honeycomb BEE Ratings BBBEE Greg Mitchell greg@honeycomb-bee.co.za 011 880 1630 / 083 401 6070
Juliana Makapan HR Assistance Juliana Makapan Julianam@telkomsa.net 0825571863
Dibata Corporate Governance HR Assistance Mathetha Swafo matheta@me.com 0722681214
Prose And Coms Soft Skills Susan Williams susan@prosecoms.co.za 011 476 7403
Thuthukisa Talent Relations Integrated HR Solutions Preggy Chetty preggychetty@outlook.com 011 825 0647 / 082 389 2363

 


Human Capital & Skills Development FAQ

Frequently Asked Question(s) FAQ, s

  1. What is the purpose of the Skills Development Act?

The short supply of skilled staff is a serious obstacle to the competitiveness of industry in South Africa. The Skills Development Act of 1998 aims to:
• Develop skills for the South African work force;

  • Increase investment in education and training, and improve return on investments in those areas
  • Encourage employers to promote skills development by using the workplaces an active learning environment;
  • Encourage workers to participate in learnership and other training programmes;
  • Improve employment prospects by redressing previous disadvantages
  • through training and education;
  • Ensure the quality of education and training in and for the workplace, and
  • Assist with the placement of first time work-seekers

The Skills Development Act aims to develop the skills of the South African workforce and to improve the quality of life of workers and their prospects of work.To improve productivity in the workplace and the competitiveness of employers and to promote self-employment.

  1. What is the aim of the skills development levy?

The levy grant scheme, legislated through the Skills Development Levies Act, 1999, serves to fund the skills development initiative in the country. The intention is to encourage a planned and structured approach to learning, and to increase employment prospects for work seekers. Participating fully in the scheme will allow you benefit from incentives and to reap the benefits of a better skilled and more productive workforce.

  1. What is the purpose of a Workplace Skills Plan (WSP)?

The Workplace Skills Plan serves to structure the type and amount of training for the year ahead, and is based on the skills needs of the organisation. A WSP should consider current and future needs, taking into account gaps identified through a skills audit, the performance management system, succession planning initiatives, and any new process or technology changes planned for the year.

Management discusses the company’s goals with employees who in turn commit to the process of achieving these goals. Management gets the opportunity to discover talent as well as skills that they did know that they had.

  1. What is an Annual Training Report (ATR)?

This report consists of all attendance registers, proof of expenditure, training provider used in this report the SETA can establish whether training was done or is in the process of being done.

  1. Does one get a percentage of monies spent on training?
  2. Mandatory grants are a refund against all monies contributed towards the skills development levy and not on monies spent on training.
  3. What is a learnership?

A learnership is a work-based learning programme that leads to a nationally recognised qualification. Thus, learners is in learnership programmes have to attend classes at a college or training centre to complete classroom-based learning, and they also have to complete on-the-job training in a workplace. This means that unemployed people can only participate in a Learnership programme, if there is an employer that is willing to provide the required work experience. A Learnership is aligned to the NQF and is usually between 12 and 18 Months in duration. Learners are paid a Stipend from the applicable SETA.

  1. Who must pay the levy?

The levy is calculated as 1% of your wage bill, payable monthly. All employers who are registered with the South African Revenue Service (SARS) for PAYE and have an annual payroll in excess of R500 000 must register with SARS to pay for the skills development levy.

  1. What are the requirements for claiming back Discretionary Grants?

Each funding window has a different set of rules, which will be communicated to companies. For further details, please contact the relevant SETA.

  1. How does an employer register for the levy?

Every employer who is liable to pay the levy must register with SARS by completing the registration form, Form SDL 101, which is available from all SARS offices. In order to register the employer must:

  • Obtain a registration form (SDL 101) from any SARS office, if not received by mail;
  • Choose from a list of registered Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) as indicated in the SETA classification guide provided with the registration form, the one SETA most representative of your activities, and
  • Choose a standard industry code (SIC) from the SETA classification guide which most accurately describes the nature and scope of your business
  1. To whom are levies payable?

Levies are payable to the South African Revenue Service, which acts as a collecting agency for the applicable SETA.

  1. By when is the levy payable?

The levy must be paid to SARS not later than SEVEN days after the end of the month in respect of which the levy is payable, under cover of a SDL 201 return form.

  1. Is there any interest and penalty incurred for late or non-payment?

SARS will impose both interest and penalties for late or non-payment of levies.

  1. How do I register as a Skills Development Facilitator?

You can use the online Skills Development Facilitator registration form via the relevant SETAs website or contact your regional co-ordinator. Your registration will be acknowledged as soon as it is processed.

  1. What is PIVOTAL Grant

PIVOTAL is an acronym which means professional , vocational technical and academic learning programme that result in a qualification or part qualification on the National Qualification Framework (NQF).

  1. What is SIPS?

SIPS is an acronym which means Strategic Infrastructure Projects

  1. What is meant by OFO?

OFO is an acronym which means Organising Framework for Occupations

  1. What is meant by NQF?

The NQF is organised as a series of levels of learning achievement, arranged in ascending order from one to ten. Each level on the NQF is described by a statement of learning achievement known as Level Descriptors (below).

There is one set of level descriptors for the NQF.

The NQF is a single integrated system which comprises of three co-ordinated qualifications Sub-Frameworks. These are:

  • General and Further Education and Training Sub-Framework (GFETQSF)
  • The Higher Education Qualifications Sub-Framework (HEQSF)
  • The Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF)

The Sub-Frameworks have qualifications registered at the following NQF levels:

  • GFETQSF  - levels 1 to 4;
  • HEQSF  - levels 5 to 10;
  • OQSF - levels 1 to 6.
  • For NQF levels 7 and 8 the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations can motivate for a qualification only in collaboration with a recognised professional body and the Council on Higher Education, in a process co-ordinated by SAQA.