A study of employment equity in higher education institutions in Durban, South Africa.
Nunoo, Grace Nketiaba.
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Post 1994, several reforms took place in South Africa aimed at transforming all institutions to become representative of all citizens. However, discriminatory practices, inequalities and racism still prevail in the South African workplace. This study investigates the implementation of the employment equity (EE) in Higher Education Institutions using the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) as the case study organisation. A mixed methods approach was used to collect and analyse both quantitative and qualitative data. The target population of the study was made up of 240 participants who had in-depth knowledge of the phenomenon. Purposive sampling used to select 10 participants for the qualitative phase, whereas the stratified sampling was used to select 138 respondents for quantitative phase. Interviews were used to collect the data for the qualitative phase, while the quantitative phase analysed the existing 2018 EE reports available at UKZN. The qualitative results revealed that the barriers to EE in the University include remuneration, institution culture, recruitment practices, selection criteria, retention of designated groups, succession planning and reverse discrimination. It was found that EE legislation has a positive impact on recruitment and selection and talent management practices. The quantitative results, on the other hand, showed that targets were met at some levels and in some groups whilst, they were not met by others. The quantitative findings further showed that most posts at UKZN, especially at top, senior and professionally qualified and experienced levels were filled by men and not women. The study recommends the need for culture diversity, EE awareness and communication, a positive attitude to EE, strong leadership support and commitment, compliance with EE regulations and EE sensitivity. The study was limited to the staff at UKZN. Future research should be comparative in nature to assess how EE is implemented at UKZN and other HEIs.