Employment Equity- should you have a plan in place?

We've had a lot of phone calls recently from companies scrambling to get their Employment Equity Reports in by the 1st October. The penalties for not submitting the report or having an Employment Equity Plan in place are pretty ferocious- R500 000 for a first offence ranging up to R900 000 for a third offence within three years. So how do you know if you need to have an Employment Equity Plan in place- well the Act stipulates you need to create a plan if you have more than 50 employees OR if your gross annual turnover is great than the following:

Sector or sub-sections in accordance with the Standard Industrial Classification Total annual turnover
Agriculture R2 million
Mining and Quarrying R7.5 million
Manufacturing R10 million
Electricity, Gas and Water R10 million
Construction R5 million
Retail and Motor Trade and Repair Services R15 million
Wholesale Trade, Commercial Agents and Allied Services R25 million
Catering, Accommodation and other Trade R5 million
Transport, Storage and Communications R10 million
Finance and Business Services R10 million
Community, Social and Personal Services R5 million

And what exactly does an Employment Equity Plan entail? Well, unfortunately you can't just unilaterally create a Plan for your Company. You have to get all stakeholders involved and the easiest way of doing this is getting the workforce to elect a Committee that represents all levels of the Company as well as race and sex. You have to train this Committee and thereafter together create the Employment Equity Plan.

If you've just found out that your Company needs to create an Employment Equity Plan and Report then don't panic- as long as the Department of Labour sees that you are in the process of putting these in place they'll give you breathing space. If you're feeling a bit stumped then get in contact with me, we've created an Employment Equity Pack that takes you through the whole process from training to submission of your report.

I hope this has been help!
Til next time….
Claire Stewart