No matter the size of the business, operating in South Africa means remaining labour compliant with all labour laws. With large businesses onboarding teams of HR experts and legal counsel to ensure they remain compliant regardless of changes, a small business can run the risk of falling short.
Even if you run a business with minimal employees, ensuring that you are updated with the labour regulations about your business is crucial to avoid any legal trouble. Breaking these laws can result in expensive fines and lawsuits and may damage your brand reputation permanently.
This article focuses on labour laws and how they differ from small businesses to giant corporations.
The Family and Medical Leave act state that employers with over 50 employers have to provide 12 weeks of job-protected unpaid leave to employees in case of falling ill for them or their families. This correlates to 12 months and can be addressed through certified medical certificates to ensure compliance.
Whether your business hires unionised workers or not, you still fall under the requirements of the National Labour Relations Act. This means that the NLRA gives all employees the right to develop labour unions to come together and approach the topic of mutual bargaining relating to workplace conditions and salaries.
The Department of Labour’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs issued regulations to protect those with disabilities and veterans. This rule applies to both single-owner businesses and large corporations. Any company must strive for aspirational utilisation goals for hiring qualified disabled people - 7% of the workforce for contractors with 100 or fewer employees or 7% for each job group for big companies.
Often, independent contractors are put in place to run operations within a business, which is a scenario seen regularly within the small business environment. However, these contractors are legally employees when putting 40 hours or more into a business. These employees are considered to be working overtime and must receive a rate of 1.5 times the hourly rate.