500 New labour inspectors deployed - here are the FIVE things they'll check

By Guest Author on 28 February 2017

Towards the end of 2015, the Department of Labour hired 500 extra labour inspectors in Johannesburg alone.

And what's on their agenda? To catch as many companies as possible who aren't complying with the over 70 changes to the labour laws that happened in the last few years!

The scary part? A labour inspector can go into any workplace at any reasonable time to check and enforce compliance with labour law, without a warrant or notice! And he can ask you for any information when it comes to employment laws.

Five steps to help you prepare for an inspector when he comes knocking…

But generally, there are five areas he'll check... So use these five steps to make sure he doesn't have a reason to go delving into your entire company history and start probing employees for any information that will give him a reason to dish out fines that could cripple you…

Step #1: Make sure you display a statement of employee rights

You have to display a summary of employee's rights in terms of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA). And you need to put it where all employees can see it.

And if the inspector is there to look at your company for BCEA issues, he'll probably also look for the Employment Equity Act summary. So, make sure you have both on display in your workplace.

Step #2: Have records of all employees

Make sure you have a record of each employee either electronically or on file. Keep this for three years from the date of the last entry in the record.

Each record must have each employee's:
• Name and occupation;
• Working hours;
• Remuneration;
• Date of birth, if under the age of 18 years; and
• Any other prescribed information as set by the industry your business is in.

Step #3: Provide written particulars of employment

You must give written details of employment to an employee as soon as they start working for you. You have to keep these details for three years after termination of the employee's employment.

Inspectors will usually ask for employee particulars, or files, randomly. So don't only have a few 'perfect' files for them to inspect! Keep them all up to date!

Step #4: Keep information about remuneration

The three most common types of information you'll need to show is that you:
• Pay remuneration in Rands daily, weekly, fortnightly, or monthly;
• Pay in cash, by cheque or direct deposit into a bank account designated by the employee;
• Ensure payment happens no later than seven days after the end of the period for which remuneration is payable.

Step #5: Comply with legislation

Make sure you follow these three acts:

1. Unemployment Insurance Act (UIA)
You have to give the Unemployment Insurance Commissioner information about your employees. It doesn't matter how much they earn or what position they're in.

2. Compensation of Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act (COID Act)
As a business in South Africa, you have to register with the Commissioner. You'll have to give details of your business and any other information the Commissioner may ask for (Section 80 of the COIDA).

3. Employment Equity Act (EEA)
If you're a designated employer, he will also makes sure you're complying with EE!

So there you have it… Follow these five simple steps and you can pass your inspection with flying colours!

Editors note:

In addition to needing these records for HR reasons, many of these requirements are essential for your food safety and occupational health and safety systems too.


About the Author:

This article was written by TrynStrugnell, Managing Editor for Labour Law for Managers.

It was first published on FSP Business, and is reproduced with permission: