Tati Nickel Mining Company (TNMC) has retrenched its corporate services manager, Peter Meswele.
Meswele’s retrenchment follows the departure of the mine’s managing director, Sebetlela Sebetlela, who has resigned amid allegations of a bungled retrenchment exercise that saw the mine laying off about 450 workers.
The departure of Meswele has effectively left TNMC with one divisional manager in George Sehunelo as other divisional managers were laid off when the BMR project collapsed a few years ago.
Curiously, Meswele is the manager who was tasked to spearhead the retrenchment exercise in line with the recommendations of┬á EOH Consulting, which was engaged to review the mine’s process flows and organisational structure in line with the 2010 – 2014 strategy.
In its report handed to the board in August 2010, EOH Consulting recommended that TNMC establish a programme management office in order to ensure that projects of the desired standards and quality were delivered in a timely and cost effective manner in addition to establishment of a strategy management function to coordinate the implementation of all corporate strategy initiatives.
The consultants further recommended that the mine develops a clear risk management strategy that would facilitate the identification and mitigation of organisational risks as well as undertaking a comprehensive and continuous business process improvement exercise geared towards improving process efficiency and service delivery.
The mine was advised to undertake an extensive business process optimisation exercise that would use the simulation techniques in order to requisite resource allocation for optimal process execution. On the organisation structure, the consultants recommended that the mine undertakes a comprehensive skills audit in order to determine skills and competency gaps that currently resided within the organisation and that the results be used as a basis for employee retention and talent management.
It was also recommended by the consultant that a formal outsourcing strategy be developed to guide the outsourcing function and the mine continued to outsource a number of services from external contractors in addition to development of a change management programme to mitigate risks related to change initiatives by the employees.
The consultants further advised the mine to undertake a manpower planning exercise in order to ensure resource optimisation per function. It is this recommendation that led to the massive retrenchments because, in some cases, it was found that the roles played by certain people were duplicated and in that respect it was found that the roles of the managing director effectively clashed with those of the operations manager.
It was also recommended that the mine reviews its remuneration policy with a view to aligning it with the current performance management system and documented strategic plan in addition to setting up a training centre aimed at developing excellence for nickel mining.