Mar

Fast forward to the future

2011-03-01 18:47

To illustrate the actual impact, effect and ‘˜horror’ of the new LRA and other Bills under review should they come to pass, FleetWatch reproduces here an actual enquiry received from a company which needed a temporary driver for a month. I have omitted the company name but this is a genuine case which we use to sketch a ‘˜before’ and ‘˜after’ legislation scenario. Here’s the ‘˜before’ new legislation scenario as it played out.

Before legislation

Enquiry to FleetWatch (28/02/2011)

We need a driver for approximately a month (during March) as one of our drivers is unable to work at this time and we cannot afford to go without a driver to do our deliveries.

We supply the vehicle – it’s just a normal bakkie so no special truck license or heavy duty vehicle driving skills are required. Could you please provide me with the terms, costs and requirements for obtaining this?

Kind regards,
FleetWatch reader (Name withheld)

FleetWatch reply (28/02/2011)

We are a trucking a magazine and thus don’t supply drivers. Try a Labour Broker like Transman and let me know if you come right. By the way, I take it you know that if the Government’s new Labour legislation and the banning of Labour Brokers comes to pass, you will not be able to hire a temporary driver for a month.

Kind regards
Patrick O’Leary

Reader reply (28/02/2011)

I have gotten hold of them – thanks Patrick. I’m just waiting to get a written quote. Oh, I wasn’t aware that the Government was planning to put such new legislation in place. I’ll be sure to pass that on to my production manager.

Kind regards
Reader

FleetWatch reply (28/02/2011)

Am pleased you’re getting to a solution. Let me know when you come right.

Regards
Patrick

Reader reply (01/03/2011)

Thank goodness the new legislation has not been put in place yet as we are actually going to go ahead and use Transman from this week. I don’t know how we would have managed without the help. I probably would have ended up doing a few deliveries myself!

Kind regards
Reader

Editor’s Comment: From sending the first email to FleetWatch at 8.42am on Monday, February 28th this company’s problem of finding a temporary driver for a month had been solved in less than 24 hours by using the services of a reputable Labour Broker, in this case Transman. By the way, none of this is made up. I have all the emails on file. It’s real.

 

Before legislation scenario, Reputable labour broker finds a driver for your company within 24 hours

Before legislation scenario, Reputable labour broker finds a driver for your company within 24 hours

After legislation

Now, let’s fast forward to the ‘˜after’ legislation scenario. For this, I passed the original enquiry to our correspondent, Stephanie Platt, who wrote the accompanying article and asked her to sketch out a reply based on the assumption that the new legislation was now law. Here goes , and let me warn you ahead of time: Be afraid , be very afraid!

Enquiry to FleetWatch (28/02/2011)

We need a driver for approximately a month (during March) as one of drivers is unable to work at this time and we cannot afford to go without a driver to do our deliveries. We supply the vehicle – it’s just a normal bakkie so no special truck license or heavy duty vehicle driving skills are required. Could you please provide me with the terms, costs and requirements for obtaining this?

Kind regards,
FleetWatch reader (Name withheld)

FleetWatch reply

Dear Reader
I would have loved to advise you to contact a company such as Transman. They used to specialise in supplying temporary staff and would have been able to assist you with a fully vetted and properly licensed driver for the month. In addition, if for any reason this person proved to be unsuitable, a replacement would be found. They would also have ensured that all statutory payments and dues were paid. Unfortunately, now that the new legislation is in place, this is no longer a possibility. Labour brokers such as Transman are no longer allowed to operate. In addition, unless you have specific permission from the Minister of Labour, you are not permitted to employ
anyone on a temporary basis yourself.

You are now left with two alternatives:
1. Simply make do without your driver for the month.
2. Employ a new driver permanently. Of course, what you do with him at the end of the month is up to you but you won’t be able to dismiss him without good cause.

Note too that to employ this new driver will not be a simple task as you are no longer permitted to place an advert in the local newspaper and select who you think is the best person for the job. You will need to advise the Government that you have this position available and they will then supply you with a lost of suitable work-seekers. Unfortunately, if none of these people are, in your mind, suitable, you still can’t simply find someone else. You will have to justify to the government department why you are not prepared to employ any of them.

By this time of course, it will be the end of March. Your company will therefore have lost money because of poor service, someone would have lost out on a work opportunity and in all likelihood, the Department of Labour will remain happily busy trying to source a driver for you until 2014.

Best regards
FleetWatch

Editor’s Comment:

I warned you. Be afraid , be very afraid! This is horror stuff. It is just not practical and will be a disaster. Rather let the Department of Labour do its job properly. As Transman’s Angela Dick says in the main article: “The tragedy of the whole situation can be placed squarely at the door of the Department of Labour. They have been completely ineffective in inspecting non-compliant labour brokers.

They take no action unless a complaint comes in from a worker. This seldom happens, since these workers are marginalized in the first place.’ Platt is right when she concludes: “As it stands, the legislation proposes throwing the baby out with the bathwater.’

Automotive sector continues to employ

NAAMSA’s quarterly review of business conditions for the South African motor vehicle manufacturing industry – comprising the major new vehicle manufacturers and specialist commercial vehicle and bus manufacturers , has been released.

On the employment front, it shows that compared to the 27 996 positions at the end of the third quarter of 2010, aggregate industry employment improved by 132 jobs during the fourth quarter of 2010 to 28 128 jobs , an improvement of 0,5%.

For 2010 as a whole, industry employment expanded by 1 217 jobs – or by 4,3%. The reporting of industry employment levels and trends reflects employees – temporary and permanent – on the payroll of vehicle manufacturers.

“The automotive industry is one of the few sectors continuing to create employment in South Africa,’ says NAAMSA.

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