Jobs rise but unionisation down - Adcorp

2012-04-10 10:22

Johannesburg - Around 108 000 jobs were created in March, up from 24 000 in February, according to the Adcorp Employment Index released on Tuesday.

It was also higher than the 80 000 created in January and the figure, the strongest since the 2009 recession, showed that employment grew at an annualised rate of 6.8% for March.

Temporary employment grew by 11.3% and permanent jobs by 9.2%.

Growth in the informal sector was 0.6% and agency work dropped by 3 098 jobs.

Employment growth in transport and logistics grew by 15.2%, electricity and utilities 13.3% and mining 12%.

Researchers examining trends in employment figures in the latest index flagged a "growing crisis" in the South African trade union movement.

“Since 2006 trade unions have lost 129 424 members which translates to a loss of R95 773 760 per annum in membership dues,” Adcorp's labour market analyst Loane Sharp said in a statement.

Three major setbacks for unions have been the reduction in their numbers since 2006 with total membership falling from around 3.5 million to around 3.3 million, low participation in strikes with only 1.4% of members turning out for strikes since 2006, and strike attendance ranging from 0% to 8.8%.

Union membership in the mining sector has seen membership as high as 80.7%, while in agriculture just 4.4%of employees belong to a union, Adcorp said.

Higher wages

“Where trade unions have been successful is in raising wages,” said Sharp.

Between 1995 and 2011, after inflation, remuneration in the non-agricultural sector increased from R9 378 per month to R12 564 per month.

In the 15 years since the Labour Relations Act was introduced, after-inflation wages increased by 28.8%.

But, said Sharp, unions had failed in the area of labour relations.

In 2010/2011 the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration received 156 000 referrals, 62% of which were settled in favour of employees against employers.

The Labour Court made 2042 decisions in 2011, with only 50% in favour of employees.

The statistics revealed that workplace conflict had been largely unchanged over the last 10 years.

Sharp believed the rising occurrence of industrial action was not symptomatic of genuine employer/employee conflict, but a response to gradually declining union membership and lower worker participation in strikes.

  • Ian - 2012-04-10 10:38

    good, bury these filthy corrupt greedy unions

  • Koos - 2012-04-10 10:43

    I don't believe the figures.

  • lydonmcg - 2012-04-10 10:46

    Excellent! Steady job growth coupled with a steady decline of these unions that have an overinflated sense of self-importance...what could be better?

  • nieldevilliers - 2012-04-10 10:47

    I'd like to see the annual income, after wages lost by strikes and union commission

  • Mavhungu Vincent - 2012-04-10 10:49

    Thats great, we are happy for that.

  • Mavhungu Vincent - 2012-04-10 10:53

    Koos, thats your problem.

      Koos - 2012-04-10 11:33

      Most economies are still shedding jobs. Would like to know in which sectors these jobs were created. When people quote numbers like 100 000 it always look suspect. Numbers like 99 873 would have been less obvious to by BS.

  • Jared - 2012-04-10 11:00

    South Africa has a choice: Either it will become successful country, or the lazy, stupid, violent, militant Cosatu "wêkkas" will continue to be the tail that wags the dog by demanding more for less work, and sabotaging public services like teaching and nursing. It is either Cosatu continuing with its cancer-like presence, OR a successful country, not both.

      Genet - 2012-04-10 11:19

      @Jared. You are so absolutely correct, there is no other way to put it.

  • hoyingomane - 2012-04-10 11:14

    So the ANC is really working,what's the point of voting the afrikaaners party the DA?

      Blixum - 2012-04-11 07:15

      Why vote for a bantustan click like the anc? Only when you are braindead.

  • Pule - 2012-04-10 11:19

    Just a lie,I got Btech Engineering without any experience,I have been applying for job through adcorp,they only interest in personeel with experience because they make lot of money.These figure is just to protect agencies/labour broker.

      Ze Don - 2012-04-10 12:10

      Actually most companies want people that can produce from day 1. Not someone that they must first train to work in the real world & can't prove that they can actually do the job.

      Pule - 2012-04-10 12:45

      Ze Don.People are not born with experience.I did praticals in a manufacturing plant.You don't actually need 15 years of experience to do other jobs.Experience is more recognised than qualification that's what you imply Ze don?

      Nkululeko - 2012-04-10 16:57

      dude, there's something called volunteering! I think that what you need to do to gain some experience!. you cant just sit around and think that someone will hire you!

  • Don.Tandy - 2012-04-10 11:38

    Hopefully at long last the unions are being recognised for what they are - a bunch of useless, self-enriching tossers who do very little for the workers they purport to represent. Unions perpetuate mediocrity, and despite them claiming to have improved salaries, I am sure if you look at annual incomes after 'no-work-no-pay' deductions are made, you will find the workers are the losers.

  • Denver - 2012-04-10 11:47

    This is why they are against Labour-Brokers. It means more money for them and has nothing to do with the employees.

  • Eric - 2012-04-10 12:05

    This is not rocket science - the two factors are obviously related. Unions drive wages beyond their level of productive return and, therefore, are the main engine of unemployment - why employ workers who cost more to pay than they produce? Automate instead. You can bet your house on the fact that decreasing unionisation will always lead to increased employment opportunities. If the poor really do want to be employed, they will have to liberate themselves from trade union tyranny first.

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