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Protect your company from any legal comebacks by issuing employment documents in writing

by , 27 June 2013
The Sharks will have to pay John Plumtree for the next two years after the coach left the union following a meeting with new CEO John Smit reports News 24. According to the report, Plumtree's legal team argued that he should be paid out for the full two-year contract extension he was promised by the current CEO, Brian Van Zyl who's set to step down from his role. Plumtree's legal team argued that Van Zyl's verbal agreement with him is binding. And that the verbal agreement between Van Zyl and Plumtree now means the Sharks will have to cough up for the next two years, even though Plumtree won't be part of their plans. Perhaps the Sharks wouldn't be in this dilemma if their employee's terms of employment were spelled out in writing. Here's how putting an employment contract in writing can protect you from any legal comebacks.

'Everyone has heard the phrase 'get it in writing'. The reason for that is simple: If the parties fail to document their agreement in writing, there's always room for future disagreements,' says VW Legal.com. And that's exactly where the Sharks find themselves.

Luckily you can prevent this from happening in your company.

Here's what you'll achieve by issuing employment documents in writing

According to The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service, the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) requires you to give your employees the terms and conditions of their employment in writing. It's important that you do this when your employee starts his employment.

By issuing employees with a written employment document that complies with the law you'll:

  • Have your employee's written confirmation that he agrees with the contents of the contract. This means your employee can't then later challenge you on any aspect which you've agreed upon.
  • Have written evidence to prove the employee understood the employment contract and willingly agreed to it.

Remember, you're breaking the law if you've employed any employee without an employment document.

So make sure you comply, but most importantly put the contract in writing to protect your company from any legal comebacks.

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Sibusiso 2013-06-28 11:55:58

We have a situation where we have advertised a position of a SCM Accountant first internally and later externally. Internally we received 5 applications and out of these only one applicant qualified in terms of experience and qualifications. The municipality has also invested in this employee by sending her to University to study a course in Supply Chain Management which she obtained. Further to this SCM Practitioners are required to obtain certain minimum competency levels in terms of Municipal Finance Management Act: Municipal Regulations on Minimum Competency Levels. She is currently studying to attain that because all SCM Practitioners and Senior Managers are supposed to have these competencies by June 2014.

Her argument is why is the Municipality not placing her in this position since the municipality has invested so much on her to achieve these qualifications. She is asking if the Municipality has no confidence in her to perform these duties. She is currently employed as a SCM Practitioner. The position she is applying for in one level higher than her current position.

Her superiors in the Finance Department are reluctant to hire her in this position simply because she once faced a disciplinary hearing for allegedly disclosing certain information relating to quotation prices to a tenderer. She was disciplined for her actions and the sanction was a written warning valid for six months which has expired almost two years ago. The reluctance by her superiors is based on honesty.

The other internal applicants are Finance Interns she has trained in SCM who are also eligible to apply again since the position has been advertised externally as well. This position is now advertised for the fourth time and she has applied all the time. When the position was advertised for the first an Intern was hired and she was not even considered for the interview although she was performing SCM duties. At that time she was studying towards attaining SCM qualification. The Intern that was hired resigned last August rendering the post vacant. The post was advertised internally and she was not considered or shortlisted which is why the post has been advertised externally and she has applied again.

She argues that she is being internally sidelined by her superiors. I am afraid that if she is not considered for interviews or if she is not hired she might take the matter to CCMA which I doubt that the Municipality will win.

I am Corporate Services Manager in the organization and I have advised Management of the consequences of our actions. Yet they seem not realize the implication of our actions. The management is trying to put her in another position which she is not qualified for and this position is in the same level as hers. Management is willing to up her salary to equate the position she is applying for.

The position they want to place her is currently vacant but certain competencies and expertise are required and she does not have those. The manager in that Department require an experienced person in this position who has good command of English and exceptional report writing skills as well good presentation skills.

Please advise on the implications and consequences of her not getting the position which she has applied for.

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