Much of the debate in South Africa today focuses on ways to facilitate job creation, to shrink income differentials and to redress inequalities in accessing wealth.
We have seen our youth (*classified as between the ages 15 and 34) being largely affected by the economic slowdown and low levels of employment in the labour market. South Africa is no exception to the global unemployment phenomenon and has a national unemployment rate of 29%. The youth are the most vulnerable in an economy where skills are required, with their future relying heavily on job readiness and ability to enter the job market.
On 28 August 2018, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) gazetted the Youth Employment Service (YES) inclusion in the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) Codes of Good Practice. The YES programme encourages corporates to contribute to empowerment in areas of national priority – addressing youth unemployment and upskilling the youth through job placement.
Participating in the YES Programme is extremely attractive for enterprises to meet their YES targets. Should entities meet all the qualifying criteria and pre-conditions, which include conducting YES-specific learning programmes, YES can assist entities to enhance their overall B-BBEE status with up to 2 levels.
What are the yes objectives?
The YES initiative signifies huge progress towards facilitating South Africa’s youth to gain work experience through employment placement. Three major factors come into play for SA business owners – the employment of youth, B-BBEE requirements and training and development.
to be employed and trained by means of learning and development programmes in the form of non-accredited and accredited training courses;
and believes in the power of disruption to change the status quo.
and job opportunities over the next 3 years for young black South Africans from urban, peri-urban and rural areas;
Businesses are in general uncertain about integrating the YES programme into an existing training and transformation strategy and maximising B-BBEE scorecard points for priority elements by incorporating YES.
SERR Synergy recognises the impact that the YES implementation has on business owners and their business operations. With this in mind, we have designed a unique SERR YES (Youth Employment Service) programme with tailor-made solutions to suit different business needs so as to address the full spectrum of B-BBEE and YES compliance requirements.
The SERR YES programme adopts a holistic approach by offering clients–
The SERR SYNERGY YES Programme and service offering include the following:
- Registration of enterprise and employees on the YES Programme digital platform and payment of registration fees;
- Training programmes to address the areas of Employability Skills; Practical Communication; Workplace Synergy; Workplace Systems and Procedures; Functional Mathematics;
Business Literacy; IT Fundamentals and a special Toolkit for Employment;
- A total of 21 – 25 days’ compulsory classroom training presented by SERR SYNERGY;
- Certification of training outcomes;
- Assistance in developing employees’ CVs;
- Contracts of employment and other legal compliance documents to facilitate youth employment;
- A full labour compliance service, as per our Labour Relations Business Services product, for one year in respect of YES employees;
- A one-year free membership of the employer organisation to assist with any CCMA and labour disputes;
- Qualifying youth employee candidate sourcing.
The aim of our SERR YES training programmes is to provide the youth with the necessary employability skills to ensure that they can become employable citizens in the current SA economy. Through our SERR YES training programmes we develop and empower the youth to apply skills through meaningful employment.
In order for businesses to qualify for YES, there are certain requirements for each of the business categories which they need to meet.
- YES greatly benefits scorecard entities from a B-BBEE scorecard point of view.
- Black youth aged 18-35 to be employed.
- Must register with YES NPC (Programme) – Registration fee according to turnover.
- At least 40% of the points required for each priority element of the B-BBEE scorecard, or 50% average (generic entities) across all priority elements and 40% average QSEs (*priority elements are Ownership, Skills Development and Enterprise and Supplier Development).
- Generics – 50% average: 34 out of 68 points.
- QSEs – 40% any two:
- Ownership and Skills: 13,2 out of 33 points;
- Ownership and Enterprise, Supplier Development: 15,2 out of 38 points.
- Entity must maintain or improve its B-BBEE status level with the introduction of YES, or apply for exemption from DTI.
- A 12-month fixed-term or temporary employment contract – Minimum industry wage.
- Be placed at EMEs or QSEs (NPOs) irrespective of size if quality work experience is ensured.
- Targets to be employed and percentages to be absorbed as per the prescribed formula
- Absorption after 12 months – Exempted from Absorption in year 1.
- New YES positions must be created in addition to existing employment positions.
- Entities may not replace existing positions with these new positions.
- Employment targets achieved after 8 months (one month to replace) – excluding first year of implementation.
- The YES programme is not a learnership, internship on apprenticeship.
The targets for Generic Enterprises - (*entities with annual turnover above R50 million which may differ for certain industries)
- 1,5% of headcount (total number of employees) in the preceding year;
1,5% of the YES Measured Entity’s average Net Profit After Tax (NPAT) from SA operations in the immediately preceding three years, converted to headcount number by dividing that NPAT number by R55 000 (if a loss, then deemed NPAT as per status SA)
- A target as determined per turnover band in the table below.
The targets for Qualifying Small Enterprises (QSEs) (*entities with annual turnover below R50 million) and Exempted Micro Enterprises (EMEs) (*entities with annual turnover below R10 million)
- are determined by the total number of people employed by the enterprise as per the headcount band in the table below.
The YES programme encourages corporates to contribute to empowerment in areas of national priority – addressing youth unemployment and upskilling the youth through job placement. Should entities meet all the qualifying criteria and pre-conditions, they are rewarded for YES participation with enhanced B-BBEE status levels. YES can assist entities to enhance their overall B-BBEE status with up to 2 levels.
Companies will be able to claim up to 50% as informal Skills Development expenditure (informal, industry-led, non-accredited training) for YES training expenses on the Skills Development element of the B-BBEE scorecard. YES is a viable model for inclusive economic transformation as it will increase employability and ultimately lead to positive social changes in South Africa and building a future that works for all.