|The Power of Self Assessment
The Self Assessment Journey at its best
As a very basic business management principle, knowing where you stand is the first step to growing a business/remedying a problem etc…
It is for this simple reason that most businesses do simple analysis tests like the SWOT analysis.
Accounting is another excellent example of business management. Businesses need accounts! Sometimes to get a bank overdraft, find financiers, to value a business, cash flow analysis or budgets. During the accounting process, a business will collect and prepare all documentation, collate it into a format that an auditor can understand and finally get an audit. This has been done for many years. Accounting has already proven to be an extremely important part of doing business.
The BEE scorecard works in the same way as any normal business practice - BEE must make Business Sense and BEE Points = Business.
It takes time to get a BBBEE scorecard and even more time to get a good scorecard. Without proper preparation or documentation a business's BEE journey is headed for certain failure. It is with this in mind that a business who genuinely wants a competitive BEE scorecard should prepare their scorecard prior to verification.
What is a self assessment? Self assessment is knowing and understanding what you are doing in the empowerment field - what you have done to earn points.
Self Assessment is a vital process to a company's BEE Journey
Remember, all scorecards produced need to follow the basic principles as set out by the BEE legislation. It is extremely important to have accurate documentation for your scorecard. In addition, for a scorecard to be regarded as valid it needs to meet certain minimum criteria.
Example: What happens if a company does not Assess themselves.
- Non-compliant - it is not the job of a verification agency (BEE Auditor) to help you earn points. Their job is to "audit" your BEE documentation. With some careful analysis you will notice many verification agencies use a disclaimer saying that the responsibility to provide complete documentation rests with the company. A verified non-compliant scorecard shows a lack of understanding of BBBEE and is a complete waste of money.
- Less points than you deserve - We have seen many instances of companies who jumped straight into a verification or prepared themselves inadequately. This is rather unfortunate. BBBEE is not difficult but does take some time and the right documents need to be collected. While managing a client's BBBEE process we often find thousands of rands that have simply not been claimed - in most cases the amount of unclaimed points will pay for a consultant and the verification and earn you extra points.
- No potential to improve - Self Assessment gives a company an extremely good opportunity to understand the effects of BEE on their company, make informed decisions and analyze the impact of certain BEE initiatives before spending the time and money. If you are simply given a scorecard by an agency, you won't find more points. Similarly if you don't know what affects your scorecard nothing will ever change.
- Mistakes - We have often seen incorrect scorecards. This is the fault of the verification agency and should have been picked up by the company.
How do you know a company has done a good job for you if you don't know what they have done?
Think about this:
- Say a verification agency made a mistake, they gave you 100 points when you only have 50 points because of an addition error - (true story). When you give your scorecard to your customers and they see the error - who is embarrassed and loses credibility?
- Say a verification agency gave you no points for Employment Equity. (This is quite understandable; if you employ a small number of black people you will get no points). On the same scorecard this company gets half their points for training black staff. The question I ask is, how do you earn points on training black employees if you don't employ enough black people to earn points in Employment Equity?
- Wasted time: The verification process is detailed but should not take months. If you have data available and you are able to respond appropriately you will get your scorecard quickly and not have to wait ages.
- Minimal benefits from BEE - lack of understanding of BEE leads to a lack of awareness of the potential opportunities BEE presents - Lost corporate and government business.
Keep your scorecard at the top of your mind, know what goes into it and it will increase.
The EconoBEE V3 and Econolog is there to help with logging your BEE information, ensuring that you earn the points you deserve.
|Think Globally, Act Locally: the World Summit on Sustainable Development
Seven years ago a major international conference was held in Johannesburg - the World Summit on Sustainable Development. Heads of state, government ministers, civil servants, and representatives from business and Non-Government Organisations flooded into the country to discuss progress on Agenda 21, the roadmap towards integrating economic, environmental and social decision-making adopted 10 years earlier at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit.
Agenda 21 enshrines a maxim that is essential to any sustainability-related actions: "think globally, act locally". This has resonance with the private sector in relation to marketing strategy in a globalised economy: a number of high profile companies have recently run advertising strategies focusing on their global reach and knowledge but simultaneous understanding of local context - Standard Bank and Vodacom being just two examples.
The notion of "think globally, act locally" extends to recognition that the environment is a global common resource, with any detrimental impacts having consequences beyond their point of origin. An example of this is that greenhouse gases emitted largely by the developed world since industrialisation are causing sea level rise and other changes in the developing world. In economic, social and environmental terms, therefore, it is important to expand the horizons of the decision-making landscape.
|Skills Development - True Empowerment
One of the core elements of true empowerment is skills development and it measures the extent to which, employers carry out initiatives designed to develop the competencies of black employees. It is often construed that only training that is provided by an outside training provider falls within the definition of skills development. Skills development can take the simplest form of on job training or external training and learnerships.
Skills development does not only earn you points for BEE, it can tremendously contribute to the performance of your business. In the long run skills development seeks to address the skills barrier on black workers and job seekers. Moreover it has the overall effect of reducing the skills shortage gap.
The DTI has announced that the transport sector charter has been gazetted. More details to follow shortly, visit www.econobee.co.za.
|Is BEE procurement a pain? Sort it out quick and easy - click here.
Not sure how to get a BEE Scorecard, click here to see a demonstration of how best to produce your own BEE scorecard.