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10 Ways HIV or Aids can impact your workforce and business

by , 13 November 2013
The month of Aids awareness is around the corner. Here's a list of ten ways HIV or Aids can affect your business if you don't do something about it.

Dear Health and Safety Reader

The month of Aids awareness is around the corner. You only need to read the statistics about the impact of HIV and Aids on workforces to see that its something you need to worry about as an employer in South Africa.

Here's a list of ten ways HIV or Aids can affect your business if you don't do something about it.

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One simple step to win over any labour inspector

By law if you operate any machinery in your workplace, you must display the General Machinery Regulations Schedule D (Or Schedule C if you use boilers) where your employees can see it. This will be one of the first things a labour inspector will look for.

Take this simple step for a good start to any inspection.

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10 Ways HIV or Aids can impact your workforce and business
  1. Decrease in productivity and profitability. If your employees are sick, they wont work as quickly or effectively. This lack of productivity will affect your bottom line;
  2. Decrease in turnover, as a knock on effect from the point above;
  3. Increase in product cost, as labour costs go up because you have to pay overtime or casual workers to produce, while still paying for the employee on sick leave;
  4. Increased stress for you, your managers and your employees. Healthy employees will have to pick up the slack from those off sick. Your managers will have the added stress of managing their employees workloads and you have the stress of managing your businesses profitability;
  5. Increased medical aid costs for your staff;
  6. Increase in labour turnover, as your sick staff may leave or pass away;

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*Knock knock* The Labour Inspector arrives unannounced… are you ready?

If you operate any machinery in your workplace, GMR Schedule D or C must be in clear view for employees to see. This will be the first thing the inspector will look out for when he's paying an unscheduled visit to your workplace.  If you are missing these summaries, he will slap you with a fine. Don't get caught without them.

Act now and order your wall charts today!

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Four more ways HIV or Aids can impact your workforce
  1. Loss of critical skills. Your top performing employee may fall ill or even pass away;
  2. Costly re-employment of staff;
  3. Loss of man hours due to days off for funerals; and
  4. Increased sick leave. Your employees may need more than their allocated sick leave, which costs your business as you will have a smaller workforce.

Have a look at Chapter H10 in your Health and Safety Advisor for more ways HIV can impact your business.

When looking at these impacts, you can now see that HIV and Aids can cost your business a lot – both directly and indirectly. So it's clear you need to do something about HIV and Aids in the context of your workplace and understand the legal issues you'll face. Your starting point should be to have an HIV/ Aids policy in place. We'll explore some more on HIV and Aids in the workplace next week.


Stay Safe,


Louise Harty
Senior Product Manager: Health and Safety

PS – If you would like to learn more about how to implement an HIV/ Aids policy in your workplace, join us at our half day HIV Training workshop on the 4 December 2013 in Johannesburg. Email Louise@fsp.co.za for more details.

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