Human Capital Performance
Our 7 549 (2017: 6 743) employees are the backbone of our operations and core to our long-term sustainability.
Owing to the nature of our business, we also employ many independent contractors such as lecturers and sports coaches.
Our people are our greatest asset; they are key to the success of our business and add value to the lives of thousands of students, parents, job candidates and clients. We take pride in our highly skilled workforce.
Our development programmes, which fall under our ADvTALENT initiatives, are continually reviewed and refined, ensuring that our people are given the means to provide quality service at all times.
We continually identify and develop key employees and high potential individuals within the ADvTECH group. Our ability to attract and retain skills is influenced by our structured approach to talent management. Identified employees participate in our structured management and leadership development programmes and we actively encourage further academic study. All these interventions, in turn, support the business and its performance.
At ADvTECH we believe in developing our leaders so that they are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to perform at their peak. We focus on building their confidence to ensure that they can lead and develop high-performing teams.
We have created purposeful learning solutions that are linked to our business strategic goals and to the personal development plans of our leaders.
Management toolkit programme The management toolkit programme is designed specifically for onboarding our managers and aims to improve their time management and competence in their new role. We want to ensure that our new leaders are equipped with the skills to be personally effective and can manage talent, as well as engage their people to get things done at the highest level. We ensure that they will become strategic thinkers who can execute in line with the business imperatives which seek to keep the customer at the core of what we do.
Management Development Programme (MDP)
The MDP stretches the abilities of talented leaders. We aim to close the gap between the talent we have and the talent we want to develop to implement our strategic goals in a systematic way. The MDP workshops are fundamental building blocks to expanding the commercial and strategic mindset of our leaders.
The programme includes a work-based project that is linked to the MDP candidate's performance goals. Candidates will have an opportunity to showcase their talent to our executives as part of their assessment process through the programme.
Leadership development masterclasses
Our leadership development masterclasses focus on growing our leadership competencies throughout our business. Our best-of-breed blended solutions are relevant to the challenges our leaders face as our business grows and evolves. We give them skills that keep them agile in a dynamic environment.
Principal Development Programme (PDP)
The PDP launched in 2018 is our flagship programme for leaders in the teaching fraternity. It is aimed at both principals and deputy principals. The role of our principal is not only to ensure that a school or campus runs smoothly, but he/she must be able to execute on the commercial requirements of sustaining a school operation.
Our programme ensures that our principals are able to identify and understand the financial levers that drive ADvTECH's business to maximise revenue and return on investment. We also develop our principals' ability to engage, inspire and lead a vast array of stakeholders including their own teams.
Our structured Mentorship programme supports our entire management and leadership development philosophy and helps ensure that our people are equipped and supported in achieving their career goals.
Although the minimum requirement for mentor/mentee pairs is that they meet for at least an hour each month, we are proud of the fact that our people spend more than the required amount of time together, working on ways to best support our mentees' career goals.
There are 65 mentors who are actively engaged with mentees. The mentorship expands beyond the formal programme and they have a knock-on effect as they deal with other staff and students.
Coaching for staff members is presented in the following areas in support of leadership development:
- Providing leaders in transition business coaching support as they migrate to new areas of responsibility and are required to focus on new behaviour values and time applications
- Support newly appointed managing directors
- Syndicate group coaching support to delegates participating in the MDP
- Syndicate group coaching support to delegates participating in the PDP
In actively encouraging further skills development to support the business as it grows, we also support employees by offering bursaries. Employees have the opportunity to obtain bursaries for themselves as well as family members.
In line with our stated goal of being a great company to work for, our group campuses have employee-centred facilities with a strong focus on building a competitive employee value proposition to ensure that we attract and retain the best people. Our people have access to some of the following facilities and benefits:
- Risk cover (death and disability)
- Retirement provision
- Optional medical aid membership > School fee reduction bursaries to staff dependants
- Study assistance at our internal brands > Accredited learning opportunities
- On-site recreation facilities at most sites > Counselling facilities
- Outsourced Employee Assistance Programme
- Various health and welfare events
- Employee recognition awards e.g. long-service
- Onsite canteens
- Other benefits
The key to consistent high quality service delivery lies in attracting and retaining well-qualified, experienced and enthusiastic employees.
Long-service awards are presented on completion of five years' service and every five years thereafter to acknowledge the important contribution of longer serving employees.
We aim for employee demographics to reflect our nation's diversity, we are in tune with the needs of our students and the companies who will ultimately hire them.
ADvTECH regards equal employment opportunity as both a strategic and a business imperative. We recognise that diversity enables us to garner the different skills, experiences and cultures of our employees to create an even richer working and learning environment. This increases our ability to deliver consistent excellent value to all our stakeholders.
ADvTECH employs 22 people with disabilities and we do everything within our means to provide the necessary resources and technologies needed for them to create and enjoy a productive working environment.
The group's employment equity policy sets out annual targets and is monitored by the group's transformation, social and ethics committee (Tsec) and the occupational health and safety (Hesio) committees.
We remain committed to transformation and continued to make progress during the past year. This is an essential component for our long-term success. While ADvTECH makes use of external accredited empowerment rating agencies, Tsec monitors the group's progress on the pillars of transformation: employment equity, black share ownership and management control, skills training and development, Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) procurement, enterprise development and corporate social investment.
Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE)
Through our affirmative procurement process, we support suppliers from historically disadvantaged communities. Our policies encourage procurement from B-BBEE suppliers, and motivate the group's suppliers to become B-BBEE compliant. This has resulted in just under half of the group's weighted B-BBEE procurement spend going to B-BBEE compliant beneficiaries.
HIV and Aids has reached epidemic proportions in many developing countries, and it has far-reaching socio-economic, employment and human rights implications.
While the pandemic is now better contained through the availability of anti-retroviral drugs, new infections continue to occur. ADvTECH is perfectly positioned to use its learning environment in the education of students and we promote responsibility with regard to this virus. We encourage and support voluntary testing and education to minimise the stigma around those living with HIV/Aids and numerous voluntary counselling and testing initiatives took place during the year.
Events and speakers are arranged regularly and condoms, pamphlets and brochures are made available at support office and in our higher education institutions.
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH AND SAFETY (EHS)
The health, safety and hygiene of our scholars, students and employees in their working and learning environment is a top priority.
ADvTECH is well placed to educate our students and instil in them a deep respect for the environment and an understanding of the risks associated with global climate change.
Environmental education forms an integral part of the curriculum at our schools. Two schools in the Centurus group are internationally certified eco-schools and have earned their platinum flags. Creating environmental awareness among our students and communities promotes the protection of the valuable natural assets of our country for the future. Practical initiatives to reduce water and electricity usage include the installation of gas geysers under sinks, light switch movement sensors, rainwater capture tanks, various recycling projects and back-up generators as well as reducing travel by using video conferencing.
When developing or expanding infrastructure, the properties department conducts impact studies to identify ways to mitigate potential negative effects on the environment. They also develop environmental management plans to protect and maintain sites situated in eco-sensitive areas. During the design process of greenfields buildings as well as existing buildings, the department ensures that they are environmentally friendly. We run environmental programmes on an ongoing basis throughout the group and encourage a greater sense of environmental responsibility. We have embarked on a project to install electricity meters at all our sites. The aim is to monitor electricity usage and consciously work towards reducing it.
To ensure that our sites are compliant with the South African Occupational Health and Safety Act, a dedicated health and safety team trains, audits and proactively ensures adherence to the group's OHS policies. As part of the group's overall commitment to student and employee well-being, the group conducts external audits to ensure independent evaluations.
The ADvTECH EHS Programme is a risk-based programme, which is run on OHSAS 18001 (aligning to ISO 45000) and ISO 14001 principles and consists of group policies, procedures, safe work procedures and guideline documents. National EHS legislation as well as local by-laws are included in the policies and procedures. Where national legislation does not exist or is lacking, international labour organisation (ILO) standards or group best practice are used as a benchmark.
EHS performance, compliance to the group requirements, as well as legal compliance is monitored through EHS audits.
Health and safety representatives were nominated and trained at their respective sites. First aid training ensures that our employees are well equipped to deal with emergencies.
Emergency preparedness and response
The safety of our staff and clients is critical. Our externally audited OHS score for 2018 was 96%. We exceed OHS regulations by having at least two first aiders per 100 people together with all pre-primary teachers who undergo a basic CPR course.
All ADvTECH sites have developed comprehensive emergency preparedness and response procedures incorporating events as identified in the risk assessments/profiles. Employees and students are aware of the emergency protocols. Emergency drills are conducted up to four times per annum.
All EHS incidents are recorded, investigated and ranked. Shortcomings are incorporated into the risk register and profile and EHS policies and procedures are updated as required.
All playgrounds are audited annually by an independent evaluator to ensure compliance to the SANS 51176 standard. This has resulted in year on year reduction in playground equipment related injuries. The number of playground related incidences have decreased significantly from seven to one.
Crime/Theft inciden analysis
Loss control procedures have been implemented. A new security company has been appointed at some sites. Security risk assessments are being reviewed and security measures assessed to ensure adequate measures are in place.
Medical Treatment incident analysis
Historically the majority of medical treatment incidents at our facilities are related to sports injuries and slip/trip/fall type injuries. Awareness campaigns have been initiated to reduce these types of injuries.
Damage to property incident analysis
There was a high incidence rate of storm damage as well as vehicle accidents in 2018. The vehicle safety programme that was implemented to mitigate this risk is being re-evaluated to identify shortcomings. A vehicle and driver safety management procedure has been issued and other control measures are being implemented in line with the risk profile.
Pecanwood College is in its 11th year of an eco-school programme that creates awareness in environmental sustainability. This year they are aiming for the diamond award with their plastic recycling project and to participate in Global Classroom Day.
We also respond to any critical environmental situation, such as the severe drought in Cape Town. In this case, along with awareness posters and communication to staff and students, the ADvTECH sites in the region implemented water saving measures including the following:
- Water in hand basins switched off and hand sanitiser provided in bathrooms
- Toilet flushing times reduced and rental of chemical portable toilets for "Day Zero"
- Cleaners using spray bottles and half-filled water buckets for cleaning
- Irrigation systems in gardens and on sports fields switched off
Installation of boreholes to run bathrooms, ablutions and for irrigation is being investigated.
Most of the ADvTECH sites manage recycling programmes to divert waste from landfill thereby reducing our environmental footprint.
Environmental targets were set to reduce utilities but requires accurate readings and measurements and is awaiting the new system that will be implemented by the group facilities department in 2019.