Here's a scenario: You find yourself at the point of CCMA conciliation. And, until that point, your expenses have been minimal and restricted only to the time sent in preparation.
But the fact of the matter is that time itself can become a costly burden to you.
As matters proceed, your costs can start climbing exponentially. Such costs could include:
Preparation time and all expenses involved;
Time spent at the conciliation hearing;
Costs from preparing transcripts;
Time costs, for management and witness, in terms of wages and productivity losses; and
The total economic cost if the award goes against you.
649 New cases are referred to the CCMA every day. Only 72% of the cases are settled...
What happens to the rest?
Did you know a full 38% if all cases end up at arbitration, the Labour Court or in strikes
or lock-outs? That's a massive 247 cases that leave employers, just like you, battling it out with an employee.
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These are very real possibilities that you'll need to consider at the point of Conciliation.
Now, while there isn't really a set-in-stone formula on how to deal with them, there are the following four questions that, when you consider them, can shed some light on your particular situation:
Are you willing to consider the re-instatement or re-employment of this person?
If not, are you prepared to agree to a financial settlement? This is especially relevant if your case is weak.
If you're willing to agree to a financial settlement, how much are you willing to pay? In other words, how much do you want to see the last of that person?
If you believe the cost of trying to defend the case is of gross excess, then how much will you be willing to spend in order to settle the issue?
Be careful of using this 'nuisance' settlement too often. Because if employees and unions realise that pattern, they could start referring every case in an attempt to get something out of you.
There were four important, and realistic, questions to ask yourself at the point of conciliation. If you want to learn more, then subscribe to the loose leaf service advertised below.
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