HR & Labour Law Specialists


Discipline Training

Disciplinary procedures are a vital aspect of managing human resources in any workplace.

These procedures are put in place to ensure that employees comply with the company’s policies, standards, and values.

Employers have a responsibility to ensure that employees’ behaviour and conduct meet the required standards and that any disciplinary issues are addressed in a fair and consistent manner.

Disciplinary procedure steps South Africa

In South Africa, the Labour Relations Act (LRA) provides the framework for the management of discipline in the workplace.

The LRA provides clear guidelines for employers to follow when managing disciplinary issues, ensuring that employees are treated fairly and with respect.

Employers must ensure that they follow the correct procedures to avoid the risk of legal action being taken against them.

Course outline & objectives
Module 1: Discipline
  1. Introduction
    • Employers – General duties and responsibilities
    • Employers – Legal responsibilities in the work place – LRA Code of Good Practice
    • Categorisation of dismissals
    • Employees – General duties and responsibilities
    • An integrated and cohesive working environment – Where does a Manager/Leader find the rules
    • Rules, instructions, meetings, negotiations – the critical importance of clarification in order to ensure consistency
    • The disciplinary process and steps required for effective disciplinary investigations and hearings
    • Discipline – Substantive & procedural considerations for fairness
    • Types of warnings and when are they appropriate?
    • Demotion as alternative to dismissal
    • Categories of unfair dismissals
    • Automatic unfair dismissals
    • Dismissal for incapacity due to illness and poor performance
    • Dismissal while on probation
  2.  Parties involved in a disciplinary hearing
    • The role of the chairperson
    • The role of the initiator/complainant
    • The role of the representative
    • Witnesses
Module 2: Complainant – Preparing for and presenting in disciplinary enquiries (Initiating Disciplinary Enquiries)
  1. Investigating a disciplinary matter
    • Conducting a disciplinary investigation
    • Precautionary suspension
    • Guidelines for statement taking
  2. Preparing for a disciplinary enquiry
    • Formulating the charge/s
    • Issuing the notice to attend a disciplinary enquiry
    • Stages in preparing for a disciplinary enquiry
    • Strategizing the case and final preparation
  3. Evidence
    • Use of witnesses
    • Guidelines for preparing witnesses
    • Types of evidence
    • Rules of evidence
    • Introducing new evidence
Module 3: Chairman – Chairing Disciplinary Enquiries
  1. The Hearing
    • Handling procedural challenges and objections
    • Dealing with points in limine
    • Explain employee rights
    • Confirm the charges
    • The plea
    • The duty to begin
    • Opening statements
    • Leading evidence
    • Examination
    • Cross-examination
    • Re-examination
    • Arguments in aggravation
    • Arguments in mitigation
    • Closing statements
  2. Decision making and the finding
    • Considerations for decision-making
    • Considerations for sanction
    • Structure of a finding
    • Do’s and don’ts of writing a reasoned finding
    • Standard and onus of proof
  3. Remedies for unfair dismissal in terms of the LRA
    • The law of unfair dismissal
    • CCMA processes
    • Bargaining Councils processes
    • Labour Court processes