Human resources

While the number of people we employ vary from year-to-year, we employ approximately 7 400 people. For current year employee numbers see our latest integrated report.

RBPlat supports the ten principles of the United Nation’s Global Compact.


Our approach to human resources management is based on international best practice, upholding the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Labour Organisation’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, which form part of our commitments as a signatory to the UNGC. The development of our human resources strategy and its alignment with our corporate strategy and our employment policies and procedures are the responsibility of the Executive: Human Resources, who reports to our Chief Executive Officer.

Human resources strategy, policies and procedures

The human resources teams at our operations are responsible for implementing our human resources strategy and policies. They are also responsible for strategic workforce planning and employee training and development.

Our employment policies and procedures ensure that we:

  • have a sound employee relations recognition agreement (ERRA)
  • uphold the right of our employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining
  • provide equal opportunities to all our potential and existing employees
  • achieve a diversified workforce that reflects the demographics of our country

provide a workplace based on:

  • mutual respect
  • fairness
  • integrity
  • non-discrimination
  • equal opportunity at all levels
  • open and two-way engagement with our employees and their representatives
  • consult extensively with all the affected parties including management, employees and the trade unions if and when it becomes necessary to reduce our workforce

The objective of the transformation element of our human resources strategy is to achieve diversity at all levels of the organisation by:

  • developing the miners of tomorrow through youth development, graduate and bursary programmes and learnerships
  • upgrading the skills of the people currently mining our operations
  • developing the historically disadvantaged South African (HDSA) leaders of tomorrow through leadership development programmes, internal promotion and succession planning
  • increasing the number of women working at mining in our workplace through retention, external recruitment and diversity training
  • achieving diversity at all levels in the organisation
  • facilitating the home ownership we are committed to in terms of the Mining Charter and our wage agreement

  Human rights

  • support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights within our sphere of influence
  • make sure that we are not complicit in human rights abuses


  • uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining
  • uphold the abolition of child labour
  • eliminate discrimination in respect of employment and occupation

RBPlat needs a healthy, motivated and skilled workforce. We recognise that intellectual capital and knowledge management are key intangible creators of wealth and that damaging human capital by abuse of human rights or labour rights or compromising health and safety has direct, as well as reputational costs.

We enhance our human capital by giving employees and community members access to training, development and lifelong learning, capturing and sharing knowledge and ensuring adequate safety arrangements are in place.
RBPlat’s most material issues in terms of human capital are:

  • improve our safety performance
  • health and wellness of our employees
  • remuneration and reward structures that encourage safe behaviour and are acceptable to our employees and other stakeholders
  • ensure we have the appropriate skills available

See the Human capital section of our Integrated Annual Report for 2016 for more detailed information.

Our employment equity policy is based on providing equal opportunities to all potential and existing employees and achieving a diversified workplace that reflects the demographics of the country.

  Labour relations

We uphold the right of our employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining. The majority of our employees, excluding middle and senior management, are unionised.

RBPlat has an employee relations recognition agreement (ERRA) in place. The threshold for a union to exercise organisational rights is 40% of any bargaining unit.

In accordance with our ERRA on collective bargaining we signed a five-year wage agreement with the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in July 2014. The agreement will be implement in two phases:  the first from July 2014 to June 2017 and the second from July 2017 to June 2019. The agreement will be reviewed in 2017 to ensure pay increases are in line with the annual inflation rate at the time and are also aligned with industry wages.

RBPlat was fortunate not to have any industrial action for the past three years during which the major platinum producers were severely affected by lengthy strike action.


We recruit from our local communities whenever possible, and in some instances offer training opportunities to community members that will equip them for employment in the mining industry.

The recruitment of employees who will provide key operational skills at Styldrift Mine has already begun and will be ongoing. Members of the local community who were trained as mechanised machine operators are already working underground at Styldrift I, gaining practical exposure to a production environment.

  Investing in our people

We believe in making an appropriate investment in the development of our people. If our business is to be sustainable and we are to achieve our strategic goal of operational excellence we need employees with the appropriate skills and experience.

It is our aim to provide our permanent employees and contractors with opportunities to acquire competencies that will allow them to develop and progress. We also offer our employees well-structured employment contracts that offer fair and competitive remuneration.

  Talent management and succession planning

In order to maintain a depth of talent it is critical that we invest in talent management and succession planning. We have a talent management framework in place that allows us to predict talent supply and the interventions necessary to ensure we have the talent available when it is required.


Our aim is to employ and retain high-calibre, high performing individuals who subscribe to our shared values and the culture of our Company.

Our remuneration strategy is aligned with our business strategy. In order to attract, retain, motivate and reward employees for executing our business strategy their remuneration needs to be market-related. We use third parties for the purpose of benchmarking our remuneration with the appropriate comparator group of companies.

While our approach to remuneration is primarily based on rewarding team performance, the unique skills and personal contribution of team members are also recognised. Our key aim is to motivate our employees and align their behaviour with our business objectives and our shared values. To support this aim our employee package consists of a guaranteed component and a variable component. For more information on remuneration see the Remuneration report in our integrated report.

  Employee benefits and remuneration

Our enrolled employees are provided with a retirement fund and medical scheme benefits, as well as group life assurance cover with a benefit of up to seven times their annual salary in the event of their death. These benefits are provided over and above the legally mandated benefits.

They are also entitled to disability benefits, which include the payment of the full medical aid benefit for the duration of the disability period, death benefits and funeral cover. Should an employee pass away while in our employ their children’s education will be paid for until they complete their tertiary education.

  Performance management

In addition to providing our middle and senior managers with key performance management indicators, against which their performance is assessed during their performance reviews, our BRPM mining teams also have key performance management indicators.

  Employee home ownership scheme

We are pleased that we have been able to offer 422 homes to our enrolled employees in the Waterkloof Hills Estate near the Waterfall Mall in Rustenburg. These homes were built as the first phase of the scheme. The estate is near Rustenburg, which is in accordance with the Mining Charter stipulation that mining companies will provide decent housing close to a functional town. Enrolled employees are allocated houses according to the qualifying criteria agreed by the Housing Committee, whose membership consisted of NUM members and RBPlat management.

These homes provide our enrolled employees with the opportunity to own an asset that is expected to appreciate over time.

The home or living out allowance employees previously received from RBPlat will be replaced with a housing allowance which will be used to pay off their home loans.

The first homes built were 80m2 three-bedroomed homes. These will be followed by homes that will vary from 140m2 to 360m2.

The show houses for the second phase of the scheme have been constructed.

  Engaging with and responding to our employees

While we recognise that engaging with and responding to our employees will always be a challenge we believe that the labour and trade union stability we have achieved can be attributed to the relationships we have managed to establish with our enrolled employees, contractors and their union representatives.

We keep our employees updated on business issues through a range of communication tools, including our Lebone newsletter, the Chief Executive Officer’s monthly email message and quarterly face-to-face meetings with our various employees, our integrated report to employees, partnership forums, the monthly feedback sessions held by the Head of Operations and quarterly face-to-face meetings with various employees and the mine managers, and cellphone text messages. We have also established an employee portal. To improve work group communication the leadership training we provide includes training in communication skills.