EE and Organisational Audits

The Employment Equity (EE) Legal Compliance Audit is one way in which organisations can pro-actively check to what degree they are meeting minimum requirements and to put in place iniciatives to meet their targets. Department of Labour's auditing of an organisation's compliance with the provisions of the Employment Equity Act constitute a rigorous and high level evaluation of a designated's employer's employment equity efforts. The majority of South African companies are found wanting in their compliance with Act and face not only compliance order but also possible fines and penalties.


Equity audit checklist: do you still discriminate in your employment practices?

The Employment Equity Act details 9 areas of discrimination, and gives employees and job applicants a much wider basis for claiming discrimination. The financial implications for a small company of amending its practices and procedures and training its management and staff are very significant indeed. However, these pale when compared to the potential business cost of a judgment against it.

The 9 categories of discrimination are sex, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religious belief, age, disability, and race. Employers must ensure that their practices do not discriminate in relation to recruitment, conditions of employment, grading, training or promotion.

The impact of this Act means that employers must now audit their practices and policies to make sure that no group works under different conditions or finds it more difficult to get a job, even if discrimination is unintentional.

EQUALITY AUDIT: answer Yes or No

1. Conditions of Employment 

# Do you pay equal pay for like work?    
# Do the same conditions of employment apply to all employees?    
# Do any benefits discriminate against employees based on sex / martial status/ age etc?    
# Have you recently reviewed conditions of employment in relation to
your employee profile?    
# Are your holiday entitlements age related?     
# If you provide medical insurance, does it apply to partners as well as spouses?    
# Have you introduced 'family - friendly' policies / practices?    
# Are you an Equal Opportunities Employer?    
# Have you explored ways to better meet the needs of disabled people?    
# Do your employment conditions take account of the needs of differing cultures?

2. Classification of Posts    

# Have you reviewed the way in which positions are classified/ categorised?    
# Have you compared the profile of employees in each role with your overall employee profile?    
# Are there any jobs which are structured due to traditional reasons, and need to have their roles updated and made more inclusive  

3. Promotions or re-grading    

# Have you compared your promotion ratios against your employee
# Do you inform all employees of promotion opportunities?    
# Do you know how many women are at senior levels? What proportion? Why?    
# Have you taken any corrective action (through positive action
programmes) to increase equality of opportunity for females, over 50's, or the disabled?    
# Has re-grading provided benefits to one group of people over other
# Have you evaluated career progress across the areas of discrimination?  

4. Recruitment 

# Have you up to date job/role descriptions for all jobs?    
# Are your interviewers trained?    
# Have all discriminatory question been eliminated from interviews?    
# Do your advertisements present a balanced profile?    
# Do you check the profile of people appointed against those who apply / your local area?    
# Is the decision making criteria clearly related to the job requirements?    
# Do you keep all selection and interview records for at least two years?    
# Have you checked with the agencies you use on the changes they have made to stay in compliance?    
# Do interviewers understand which questions may be discriminatory?    
# Could any of the steps in the selection process introduce bias or
# Do you state (and practice) being an Equal Opportunities Employer?    
# Do you have a recruitment policy written down?    
# Have you a screening policy, which you consistently apply to each job?

5. Training/experience

# #Are training opportunities open to all?    
# Is training spread equally within work groups?    
# Have you compared your training ratios against your employee profile?    
# Have you assessed whether your education assistance is spread across employees