DiscoverAndrew Levy Employment
Andrew Levy Employment

Andrew Levy Employment

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Andrew Levy Employment is a specialist labour law practice and advisory firm.

We are leaders in employment relations, labour market analysis, and economic forecasting. We provide high-level advisory services, educational seminars and training, and in-depth analysis in the broader labour market.

With over forty years of experience in dealing with and managing labour law and employment relations, Andrew Levy Consulting offers clients hands-on assistance with any labour related matter.

Our consulting services have been used by HR teams, executives, directors, shareholders and general managers for decades. Our pragmatic, solutions-focused approach continues to prove effective at resolving any labour related matter, allowing our clients to continuously improve their human capital strategy.
15 Episodes
With unemployment now at its highest level in years, the question on everyone’s lips is... "how this can be turned around?" Andrew Levy discusses his views on the issue of radical labour market reform and the need for strong growth of around 5% over the next decade in order to bring about much needed job creation. He advocates the scrapping of bargaining councils, the introduction of the strike ballot, and a statutory duty to bargain in good faith with penalties if not adhered to, as well as guidance around the area of union competition. He recommends limited access to the CCMA depending on screening and length of service, coupled with an active and vigorous policy of awarding costs. All this hinges of course on government buy-in and the creation of an enabling environment.
Join Andrew Levy as he touches on the important issues that arose during 2021 and those that await us in 2022. With the dark COVID cloud still hovering above us the effect on the economy has been dramatic with employment, wages and earnings being the main casualties. Listen to Andrew as he discusses the issue of mandatory vaccination in the workplace. How this fits in with the rights enshrined in our Constitution and how you can safely handle those anti-vaxxers. What is happening in the realm and direction of wage settlements? Why we are surprisingly seeing more militant strikes in the current economic environment and why union strategies appear not to have changed in light of our fragile economy.
This popular and practical guide for SA Employers, first published in 2010 has been updated in light of the many important developments in our labour law during the last decade. These include the implementation of the national minimum wage, the changes with regard to labour brokers and fixed term contracts and the introduction of parental leave. It also includes a section on how to handle industrial action, the questions surrounding Covid-19 and the 4th Industrial Revolution. Written in Andrew’s inimitable style, interspersed with his hands-on Levy Laws, and case studies, it concludes with a useful decision making methodology that will enable employers to make better labour related decisions and avoid costly mistakes.
Andrew provides an insightful commentary on the unexpected spate of strikes in the in the fourth quarter of 2021 at a time when the country experienced its highest level of unemployment and job loss – a direct result of the national lockdown - the restrictions surrounding the Covid pandemic and the additional cost incurred by many employers. What can be the motivation behind these strikes be and did they benefit the union and workers in terms of the outcome? Do workers have the same inclination to strike as unions? Have unions changed their negotiation strategies given the constraints experienced by employers and what can we expect in the months to come. And why is the Code of Good Practice : Collective Bargaining, industrial Action & Picketing so important, especially with regard to bargaining in good faith.
Can you compel an employee to have the Covid vaccination? Find out what Andrew has to say about this topical and sensitive issue. How South Africa’s Constitution balances the rights of both the employer and the employee. And how the clause with regard to the limitations of these rights goes even further in terms of bypassing some of these protections in the light of higher ideals such as protecting the environment. If an employee decides not be vaccinated, what is the situation with regard to the employer who needs to provide a safe working environment? And finally the question of whether you can suspend and ultimately dismiss an employee for refusing to vaccinate and how you can fairly go about this.
Draft Code on the Prevention and Elimination of Violence and Harassment with Sarah Levy (Levy Africa Network) Understanding the New Draft Code on the Prevention and Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work and the five significant changes that are introduced into South African labour law including the bringing together of violence including gender based violence with harassment and a broader list of those who can be perpetrators and victims of sexual harassment. Andrew and Sarah discuss the significant expansions brought about by the introduction of the concept of the world of work, as well as the impact of technology and social media in perpetuating and covering up harassment. Sarah then goes on to discuss the introduction of bullying into the code, and distinguishes it from mobbing. Draft code on the prevention and elimination of violence and harassment · ILO Violence and Harassment Convention, 2019 (No. 190)
The Myths, empathy exercises and legal framework In this episode, Sarah Levy of Levy Africa Network talks to Andrew Levy about how to develop successful sexual harassment training programmes, focusing on the four common questions that delegates on violence and harassment training typically ask - why me? what is harassment? what if someone reports an incident of violence and harassment to me? and what if I witness it? Sarah and Andrew discuss the important concept of the bystander effect, and how important it is to train bystanders to move from being passive witnesses to active bystanders or upstanders. In the programme, Sarah also elaborates on the importance of developing empathy and how to address a number of myths around violence and harassment, such as the myth that only sexual attractive people can be subjected to harassment. Visit Levy Africa Network to learn more about our training programmes.
Today Andrew explains the collective history behind grievance procedures and why in their current form they are not suitable for certain issues. How a badly drawn up grievance procedure can lead to more problems such as challenging authority and how important it is to have an exclusion clause for issues where other policies / procedures exist. That procedures should be streamlined for different groups, and not contain clauses that may allow or prevent outcomes. He also explains when it is necessary to call a halt to their continued submission.
Today Andrew sets out the contractual obligations of the parties in terms of the persistent problem of absence and attendance and answers the question of who alone can justify and grant leave. He covers the broad outline and principles around what does and does not constitute the abuse of sick leave. What the three types of leave are and at what stage it becomes unauthorised. The importance of finding a pattern and at what point absenteeism moves to the realm of discipline, no pay and ultimately termination.
Is the contract of employment a force for good or evil? The answer is that it can be one or the other and will depend on how it’s drafted. Given that the employment contract is one of the pillars of the employment relationship and is the first thing an employee will reach for when the relationship turns sour, it is sometimes surprising to see how many contracts there are that actually limit the employer and put huge power into the hands of the employee. Had they understood this, would employers be so eager to pay good money for over-contractualised contracts that specify in the minutest detail exactly what employees must do, when the employer does not need the power of contract to enforce the majority of rights it already has? At the root of the problem is the fact that employment is one of the most dynamic relationships of all, and an employer that can rapidly respond to the ever-changing demands of the market will be the employer with the most successful operation. On the other hand, contracts tend to be static documents - for the simple reason that they try and make the relationship stable and predictable - and don’t cope well with change. Is there a middle way? Indeed there is and careful drafting can reward you with a contract that has the best of both worlds. Just what this contains and possibly more importantly, exactly what should be left out of an employment contract is the topic of this Podcast and I am confident that my top tips will help you to draft better ones and improve your flexibility.
This is the first of a number of insights I am going to give you to help you deal with the perennial problems of absence and abuse of sick leave. No matter what you do, you will never eradicate this problem, as it is endemic to work. Nevertheless, once we give you some basic principles and teach you some practical techniques, we will materially help you to not only understand the whole issue around absenteeism, but you will be given some really powerful weapons to deal with it. These are insights based on the working lifetime's exposure to all the abuses and excuses employees come up with in respect of taking some time off work, at your expense. As usual, I'm going to build up from an understanding of the principles, stated simply and clearly, because once you understand those you are in the driver’s seat. Once we've established these, I will show you some top tips for practically gaining the upper hand in this perennial struggle. Today I'm going to talk about the employee who is absent without permission, and then comes back and tells you that she will "… take it as annual leave…”
Practical advice on managing tricky but recurring staff problems Don’t be left hanging - Do I have to have a hearing before I suspend someone? Sanity at last!, and drafting suspension letters that will support the employees’ weight. Now you see them, now you don’t – resigning with immediate effect and it’s just desserts. We all know this is a favourite employee trick -but is it kosher? Can you hold a hearing in their absence, and can you give a reference that says that they are a deserter? Revenge is a dish best served cold. Website
Working from home and what to expect in 2021 2020 was a watershed year as the lockdown took hold. 2021 will prove to be just as difficult with new challenges. Working from Home (WFH) has resulted in increased cases of employee stress and depression and with it the issue of handling poor performance at a distance. Will lost jobs be reabsorbed back into the economy and how is the union movement dealing with the spectre of unemployment and ongoing retrenchment? Strike incidence is down but there is an increase in “lawfare” which can be a double edged sword. Listen and be prepared. Website
An overview of developments in the third quarter of 2020. Covid’s effect on unemployment, GDP and retrenchment numbers. Average settlement levels for unionised and non-unionised staff. Union strategic approaches to negotiating in a tough economic environment and levels of current demands. The outlook for the pattern and propensity of strike action over the coming months and what will happen to wage cuts and rates of pay once the State of Disaster is lifted? Website
We explain what subscribers can expect of our quarterly reports and forecasts of wage settlements by sector, union, and across the economy. It provides an accurate and realistic forecasting model for both unionised and non-unionised staff wage increases and developments with benefits. It discusses key factors that must be taken into account at the negotiating table and the importance of benchmarking, affordability and comparability. It keeps you abreast of labour market developments, statutory changes, as well as comprehensive strike data and union strike propensity Website
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