How well do South Africans understand the transformation agenda beyond BEE codes?
Awareness can mean the difference between an informed choice, or the risky consequences of silo-driven decision making and the latent knock-on effect that companies stand to lose access to sectors of their current trading market.
In a fast-paced environment, rules change quicker than establishments can incorporate them. Companies are required to make connections between legislation and corporate governance, making it harder to find sustainable solutions in times of transformation.
This is particularly evident in terms of corporate compliance. To cut through the confusion that arises between changes to the charter and implementation phases it is important to understand the BEE Codes from a long-term transformation perspective:
Social Development (SED)
At the core of social investments, many well-meaning individuals and organisations ‘throw money’ at problems, without consulting the complex needs of communities in question. Many responsible investment decisions are held without the beneficiary voice in representation.
As a result, companies can feel short-changed in terms of the true sustainability of their efforts. Much can be attributed to the lack of connection made on a high level between policies across sectors and how this looks on the ground. Partnering with organisations who have experience working directly with civil society is highly beneficial.
Skills Development (SD)
Due to levels of poverty and inequality in SA, getting youth ready for the ‘World of Work’ is more complex than it seems. Learners must be guided to overcome any limiting beliefs that may impede their sense of value in society.
Once these core beliefs are rooted out and replaced by a sense of self-worth, young adults are free to pursue career excellence. Make sure your compliance partner understands this in order to ensure retention, successful learnership and sustainable career development investments.
Enterprise & Supplier Development (ESD)
ESD contributions are essential to support small business development that will stimulate the economy resulting in Job creation. It is important that skills development and job creation is viewed juxtapose to each other as both as not mutually exclusive. With a significant growth within the social development arena developing SA’s social entrepreneurship landscape should be a key focus for organisation who are considering sustainable ESD investments.
These organisations are adding to tomorrow’s thriving economy and creates a platform for business, government and civil society to partner towards a meaningful outcome.
Look for a BEE partner who desires long-term investment via ownership-partnership with an organisation that can create a multiplier effect on all the above investments. Emerging hybrid social enterprises with investment trusts offer these solutions. Remember the difference between compliance and governance.
The Value of Cross-Sector Collaboration
South Africa is a unique society, even in a global context. The current socio-economic landscape has forced business, government and civil society to review the way they relate to one another.
A society based on integrated solutions, requires integrated strategies to truly support itself and its capability. In the field of compliance, this means understanding challenges and opportunities from both a macro- and micro-economic perspective. In this regard, to ensure return on investment and lower risk, opt for a partner with expertise across both sectors and disciplines to ensure an impactful, integrated approach.