If your B-BBEE scorecard does not reflect your best efforts, then it may be time to revise your policy, re-acquaint yourself with the legislation and change your approach. The B-BBEE Act that was promulgated in 2003 (and amended in 2013) was based on a strategic plan for Black Economic Empowerment. The first BEE Act was signed by Nelson Mandela. Ramaphosa was chair person of the Commission of B-BBEE.
Before the Act was presented in parliament as a Bill for consideration, it was known and agreed that a plan for affirmative action for the country in its entirety would be needed. If the government was going to ask companies to follow a new law, then a plan or at the very least a strategy had to be in place.
Although the strategy is now old (it was created in 2003) it is an opportunity to get back to basics and remind ourselves of the original plan, which may help to shed light on current issues.
The document refers to legislation introduced since 1994 (a watershed moment in the country’s history). It was part of the plan to redress inequalities from the period prior to and leading up to 1994.
The original strategy included plans to increase:
• The number of black people who own a business and who have control of a business.
• The number of black people in executive and senior management in business.
• Number of new black enterprises.
In general terms, the strategy encouraged black participation in all spheres of business. It also encouraged reducing the income gap between black and white workers.
Four Key Principles of the Strategy ***
1. Black Economic Empowerment is broad-based.
2. Black Economic Empowerment is an inclusive process.
3. Black Economic Empowerment is associated with good governance.
4. Black Economic Empowerment is part of the country’s growth strategy.
*** Taken directly from the strategy document. Follow this link to read an explanation of each of the key principles.
Other than key principles, the strategy goes further and indicates how it will create and use policy instruments. These include legislation, regulations, partnerships, restructuring of State Owned Enterprises, preferential procurement in government and an advisory council to drive the implementation of B-BBEE.
In addition to the strategy, business should pay attention to these items that all assist with implementation.
We must consider each of the following when creating the policy for Affirmative Action and Black Economic Empowerment.
• The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act 53 of 2003 as amended by The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act 46 of 2013.
• B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.
• B-BBEE Regulations.
• The strategy of the B-BBEE Commission.
• B-BBEE Sector Charters.
• SANAS and its requirements for verification agencies.
If your B-BBEE scorecard does not reflect your best efforts, then it may be time to revise your policy, re-acquaint yourself with the legislation and change your approach.
At Triple E Training, we understand the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice and all the Acts that support affirmative action in South Africa. Our team is ready to coach and mentor your committees on the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.
By Heidi D Edwards, Associate HR Professional.
The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act 53 of 2003 as amended by The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act 46 of 2013.