The first year of the HR Audit Council: From good governance to our first audit awards
by Maropeng Sebothoma
Permit me to share my delight on the progressive journey that the HR community initiated from just a mere practice towards that of a full professional dispensation. The HR audits against National Standards epitomise what HR professionalism is all about. The hard work by the SABPP staff and broader community in this regard cannot be appreciated enough for such professional turnaround strategy and execution.
Setting the standards is a major milestone empowering the professionals to carry out their duties in a structured, systematic and harmonised manner thereby enabling positive impact on business and organisational objectives. However, standards should first be applied and then auditing provides an assurance framework.
Over the years, auditing proved its worth in diverse fields such as Governance, Financial Management, Quality Management System, and Information Technology. As one of the practitioners in the South African Excellence Model and TQM, I recall the survey by the International Accreditation Forum published in 2012 across the globe. The study revealed that the key drivers for seeking certification were predominately for Internal Business Improvement (47%), customer requirements (32%) and regulatory compliance (13%). Generally, organisational certification is underpinned by rigorous auditing/assessment of some sort. For that matter, on the side of people practices and management, the SABPP HR Standards Auditing Framework has reference and is reconcilable to internal business improvement and legislative compliance to a larger extent.
The HR standard Audit is a flagship of SABPP, as such we have assembled the Audit Council to oversee and direct the audit framework implementation and build enough capability to cater for envisaged high demand by organisations irrespective of size, geography, product or service offering.
The Audit Council was set up to provide good governance in HR Audits. This will give the auditees confidence that SABPP takes governance of audits seriously. While we started the year with the Audit Council, we are now proud to present the first Annual HR Audit awards. These awards will showcase companies that have performed the best during the audits. The awards function will take place on the evening of the 27th July. Please join us for this historic occasion. We will also share our second Annual HR Audit Tribune summarising the outcomes of 17 companies audited against the HR standards.
In marching forward, I remain absolutely confident in the nuts and bolts of the HR Auditing framework and associated based processes to leverage evidence- based continuous improvement and value for money. I thank and congratulate all the brave HR Directors for putting up their hands to be audited against the National HR Standards. On 27 July we will celebrate your success as pioneers in professionalising your HR functions.
Maropeng Sebothoma is Chairperson of the Audit Council, Board member of SABPP and an HR Executive at SARS.