Labour Law – is your company doing it right? NOVA can help

Did you know that it is illegal in South Africa to force any employee to work unpaid overtime, no matter what their contract says? Of course you do… but that doesn’t stop many employers from doing exactly that

Did you know that it is illegal in South Africa to force any employee to work unpaid overtime, no matter what their contract says? Of course you do… but that doesn’t stop many employers from doing exactly that, among a host of other, less obvious, labour law infringements that could land them in hot water. Fortunately, NOVA Human Capital Solutions has a way to tackle the problem head-on, through our Labour Law and Management training.

South Africa is known for having a highly progressive constitution and labour laws. The labour laws, especially, have been written to take into account a considerably more traditional viewpoint on the rights of both employees and employers, and are built on a foundation of fairness to all parties while relying heavily on case law.

Unfortunately, many employers (and employees) are not sufficiently well versed on the intricacies of South Africa’s labour laws. This can cause a multitude of problems, from incorrect handling of disciplinary procedures, to unintentional law-breaking. Cases brought before the CCMA, as a result, come from all industries and company sizes, from large corporates to small businesses with only a few employees.

NOVA Human Capital Solutions has been providing HR-related consultancy services, software, and training for several years, including labour law training and management training. The labour law and management training services have been on offer as part of NOVA’s client engagements since 2012, but recently, we decided to offer it as a standalone service, available both to existing NOVA clients and as a one-off offering.

We realised there was a need for the service in the market thanks to our clients, who were experiencing ongoing labour law-related difficulties. We found that in many larger companies, there is considerable over-reliance on the HR department or senior management to ensure all labour laws are being properly implemented and followed. South Africa’s labour environment is constantly changing, and these changes can frequently result in an HR manager relying on outdated information or understanding to make critical decisions.

Simultaneously, there is insufficient education and training offered on labour law and its implications, especially when it comes to managers and supervisors without any HR knowledge or background. This means that, while managers may be highly experienced in their field of expertise, they may be unintentionally making critical mistakes that can impact the business from a labour law perspective. Furthermore, there is often a gap in people’s understanding of the implications of legislation – they may not fully understand the potential ramifications of their or their employees’ actions and therefore may deal with them improperly.

This is understandable, as the South African labour law is not only extensive, but also quite complex, and it can be a full-time job just keeping up with it. That is why NOVA has dedicated specialists who constantly stay up to date with current legislative changes and amendments, and keep themselves informed about the correct way to interpret the laws. This team is focused on ensuring our clients and users of our management and labour law training will be properly equipped to handle their human resources correctly and legally.

NOVA Human Capital Solutions has been operating in HR and Payroll for over 16 years, providing clients with extensive, customisable solutions for all aspects of their people management. In that time, NOVA’s advisory services have helped ensure that less than 12% of our clients’ dismissal cases have been referred to the CCMA, together with a 50% risk reduction by following our advisory services and methodologies.

Details about NOVA’s management and labour law training sessions are available from Training may be offered as a one-off service, or may form part of ongoing services.