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Three things NOT to do when dealing with temporary employee contracts

by , 26 February 2013
'As a rule, unless the temporary worker is merely relieving a permanent post, it is most unwise for you to employ someone as a temporary worker in a position that is permanent,' says The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service. Here are three reasons why you shouldn't break this rule ...

According to The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service, the purpose of an employment contract is to regulate your relationship with your employee. This is done by setting out the terms and conditions of employment that'll apply for the duration of your employee's employment.

A temporary employee is someone who works under a limited duration contract, for instance, an expiry date for the duration of employment must be specified. Therefore, it's of outmost importance that contracts of employment are clear, concise, and easy to understand and read. This will ensure you avoid landing at the CCMA for unfair labour practice.

But, do you know what you shouldn't do when dealing with temporary employee contracts?

Three don'ts when dealing with temporary employee contracts

  1. Don't use the fixed-term contract as a trial period to see if the employee is worth permanent employment. Instead of doing this, use a legitimate probation period to ascertain whether or not the employee is suitable for the position.
  2. Don't use temporary contracts to cut costs by depriving the employee of benefits such as medical aid and pension. 'This would be considered an unfair labour practice as even fixed-term employees can claim these benefits especially if they are on a long term fixed-term contract,' explains The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service.
  3. Don't hire temporary employees in permanent jobs to use the expiry of the contract to get rid of troublesome employees. 'If the CCMA detects this 'clever' tactic, it will find the termination to be unfair, because there should be a fair reason to dismiss an employee, and a fair procedure should be followed,' warns The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service.

It's that simple: Only hire a temporary employee if the position is genuinely temporary.

By knowing and understanding what not to do when dealing with temporary employee contacts, you'll ensure you stay on the right side of the labour law.



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