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Designated employers have a legal responsibility to create balance in their business in South Africa. So use these 5 objectives to help you on your way

by , 15 December 2015
Upon paying some attention to Affirmative action in the workplace, and on understanding it, I was reminded of an article which I wrote earlier this year.

It dealt with the concept of Affirmative Action, and attempted to show that it's not that new, not even in South African terms.

Afrikaner Nationalism, in the wake of British rule throughout much of South Africa, appeared to show similar thoughts to 'balance out the playing field' between the 2 people back in the day.

The point I'm trying to make is that, historically speaking, a form of affirmative-action thinking is, in actual fact, understandable, if not inevitable.

And so it's important for us to honour the past inequalities which apartheid seemed to create along racial lines, and work towards, as was stated earlier, 'balancing' things out.

What do I mean by all this? Well, read on...

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Affirmative Action in today's South Africa

Affirmative action in South Africa seeks to give preference to members of 'designated groups' who meet the inherent requirements for a job, even if they're not the best candidate for the job.

If you're a designated employer (an employer who hires more than 50 employees or who has an annual turnover equal to or higher than a particular amount within their sector), then you must stick to Affirmative Action requirements.
 
How can you adhere?

If you're a designated employer, you'll have to create, AND APPLY, an affirmative action policy when hiring or promoting people.
Its main objectives, as part of the policy itself, should be based around the following 5 things:

1. To create a balanced profile of employees within the company, within all levels and job categories in the workplace, so as to reflect the make-up of South African society.
 
2. To eliminate and correct social and racial imbalances of the past.
 
3. To eradicate any unfair discriminatory practices in terms of gender, race or disability etc.
 
4. To provide for the company's present and future requirements for skilled staff in line with its business plans.
 
5. To achieve a balanced environment in which the suitable person for the job is hired, regardless of race, gender, disability and so on, the point where these areas are no longer an issue in South Africa.
 
Remember that you, as a designated employer, play an important role in terms of transformation in South Africa – so as to balance out the inequalities of the past. So play your part well.

To learn more on Affirmative Action in the workplace, subscribe to Labour Law for Managers today.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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