It is an interesting concept to know that in South Africa today we have numerous pieces of legislation governing the employment of staff within firms, companies and individual employment. Firstly it is important to bear in mind the two basic pieces of legislation that being the Labour Relations Act and the Basic Conditions of Employment Act. Thereafter there are no less than 11 pieces of legislation, which directly involve the employment of staff. It is a minefield, which unfortunately is getting worse and not better. There are often “explosions” at the work place, which are both costly and time consuming.
The dismissal of an employee has to be very carefully done, one has to tread through that minefield with the help of experts, and even then, things might go wrong. It is vital that every employer does take some advice at some stage on how to approach the procedure and to ensure fairness (as defined by Labour Courts) is adhered to.
Even legislation such as the Companies Act must be taken note of.
When one business is taken over by another and a sale agreement is entered into it is important to ensure that the staff are treated correctly in terms of Section 197 of the Labour Relations Act and also that the consultation process is properly adhered to. Even in business, rescue proceedings the employees continue to be employed on the same terms and conditions.
This minefield of employment is probably one of the greatest factors standing in the way of job creation. Many entrepreneurs find it easier to invest their money elsewhere than in their own businesses. This is just the opposite of what we need in South Africa today. At least one third of the employable population cannot find work and probably will never find work. We need to impress upon the powers that be to have a re-think and to lessen the load on the employers.