This site uses cookies to provide you with a more responsive and personalized service. By using this site you agree to our use of cookies. Please read our cookie notice for more information on the cookies we use and how to delete or block them.

Bookmark Email Print this page

Retention of top talent

Transformation at Deloitte

Leading Transformation is one of the firm’s key strategic drivers. It is critical to the sustainability of our business, both in terms of our ability to win work and service our clients as well as being a magnet for top talent.

Deloitte is recognised by ABASA

Deloitte has defined Leading Transformation as follows:

  • A corporate culture that offers fair opportunity and a professional home for all
  • A balanced demographic mix at all levels
  • A standard of excellence which our people, our clients and our future talent recognise, respect and appreciate

Successful Transformation is a precondition for optimal personal and professional effectiveness and is a key contributor to the firm’s strategic objective of being the standard of excellence. It underpins our brand, ensures we attract a diverse pool of the right talent, supports our business growth and contributes to our long-term sustainability.

However, the scarcity of qualified black CAs, tax practitioners, engineers, project managers, IT specialists and other professionals has contributed to the skewed distribution of black professionals in the firm. From a gender perspective, the shortage of women in senior leadership positions also requires action. For this reason, the Transformation Board has put specific measures in place to close the gaps.

White males have an essential contribution to make to the firm’s transformation process. In many instances they are the role models, the experts and the most experienced candidates for leadership roles. The Talent Board and the business unit leadership are charged with ensuring that we do not take a single individual for granted and that we give every talented person the opportunity to achieve their full potential.

While admirable progress has been made in becoming a truly transformed firm and we have shown our commitment to this process over many decades, important work remains to be done. Priority areas include equalising the ratio of black and white and male and female partners and directors, achieving greater balance in leadership positions, significantly strengthening our partnership pipeline and ensuring that every employee has the experience of fairness in opportunity and exposure.

The 2012 Transformation strategy is premised on the following principles:

  • That we will consistently strive towards race and gender balance in our partner and director numbers
  • That we will maintain at least a Level 3 BEE recognition level on our DTI Scorecard
  • That we will continue to use organic growth as the foundation of our talent strategy

Our Transformation objectives:


Goal by 2012

Optimise the retention of all our talent by creating an enabling culture:

In an environment that feels like a professional home for all;

And where everyone has fair opportunities to grow and develop to their full potential.

Mentors/counsellors and development facilitatorsto be operating at optimal effectiveness

Utilisation processes in every BU to be effective, fair, monitored and transparent

Zero Employment Equity barriers reported through the EEA Consultation process

Socially and culturally inclusive eventsto be the norm in all BU’s

Ongoing dialogue circles and change management interventions to be facilitated to provide the platform for  colleagues to develop real, sustainable relationships built on trust

Maintain our leading position in Transformation and provide role models for junior professionals by consistently increasing the number, and seniority, of black and female partners and directors.

To achieve the targets for black and female partners in the following categories 

  • Partners/directors
  • Executive leadership
  • Senior leadership
  • Lead Client Service Partners & Directors
  • Associate Directors

Ensure the sustainability of our transformation strategy by significantly strengthening our partner pipeline of black candidates.


To achieve the target for black senior managers, AD’s and principals

To develop a robust pipeline of potential candidates to ensure achievement of partner/director target

Note: Female SM, AD and principals are at 45% (June 09). The challenge is converting to partnership.

Transformation Board
The Transformation Board is a high-level strategy and policy making body that meets at least three times a year.

Membership: Chairman, CEO, COO, SLLs, Head of GHR&D, Transformation unit and Transformation representative on the Board.

Women’s Leadership Initiative

Deloitte Southern Africa strongly supports diversity in all its forms in South Africa and globally and recognises the strong business case for gender equality within the firm, seeking to lead the profession in this regard.

Our Southern Africa’s Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) focuses on building relationships with women leaders in business, government, and academia, and works to ensure that the firm’s talented women are retained and prepared for leadership positions. As a result women in the firm represent a significant portion of key leadership positions.

Furthermore, the Deloitte Southern African Women’s Leadership Initiative provides practical support and infrastructure for the challenges faced by both men and women of the firm in balancing their different roles.

Deloitte supports the advancement of women in the same way that it does for all its people. The firm has extensive processes for career planning, development facilitation, manager and partner/director assessment and development. Deloitte Southern Africa has updated its maternity leave policy to offer fully paid and part-paid maternity leave benefits to all women, including trainees and contractors, where previously two years’ service was required. In addition, the firm has a number of policies that apply equally to men and women but which were developed with the particular needs of professional businesswomen in mind. 

These include providing Deloitte Southern African professionals (including partners/directors) with the option of flexible work arrangements (part of our firm's Working Differently initiative) so that they may balance their private and professional demands, enhance their quality of life, and increase their job satisfaction.

The Southern African member firm continuously trains its partners/directors and staff. Some of the training offered requires staff to attend seminars away from home and overnight attendance. Deloitte Southern Africa accommodates those whose family responsibilities make attendance at residential seminars difficult, by permitting them to bring babies under the age of two, together with a caregiver.

Raising awareness for women’s issues
In 2009 the Deloitte Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) initiated our “Women Talking Business” forum where we bring together top women from the private and public sectors in debate, as well as our women partners/directors who have a focus on the public sector. 

Global studies have proven that entrepreneurship and new venture creation are essential drivers of economic growth and social mobility. However, many hard working, creative individuals lack the business skills to turn an entrepreneurial idea into a successful business venture. As a result, statistics show that 50% of all new companies fail within the first two years. To counter this, Deloitte is involved in the Succeed Programme. Spearheaded by the WLI, Succeed is now in its third year in partnership with Business Partners and Business Women’s Association in Gauteng.

This year 20 female entrepreneurs were included on the programme. They are mentored over the course of the year by an advisory board of three to five advisors who have the business skills each particular women entrepreneur needs support in. Prior to the start of the programme Deloitte does a high level diagnostic of the entrepreneur’s businesses and then matches them to appropriate advisors.

In this year’s “Top Women in Business and Government” publication we again put in an article showcasing some of our top women (Deloitte partners and directors Delia Ndlovu, Berlina Mxakwe, Anneke Andrews and Trish Wilson) on the role mentorship has played in their careers and how they in turn are contributing to the development of others.

Women’s Day 2009 was celebrated across all regions in South Africa in August. In Gauteng our guest speaker was a security consultant who spoke on personal safety anti-hijacking. This was followed by a panel discussion facilitated by WLI chairperson Dee Botha with partners Trish Wilson and Nisha Dharamlall on the panel who spoke on mentoring and being a role model.

Working Differently at Deloitte

In line with our drive to attract and retain the best people, Deloitte conducts The People Survey across its member firms in 140 countries. One area that stood out in the results for the Southern African firm was work life balance, which continues to be a challenge and area of concern for the people of Deloitte.

Deloitte had in place a host of flexible work arrangements (FWA) policies, but feedback from staff was that it was seen to apply only to working mothers. Working Differently shakes up the “8-5” paradigm and replaces it with one that emphasises choice for employees in terms of where and when they work and shifts the focus towards delivering results. It is about new, creative and improved ways of working that meets the needs of our people and the clients that we serve.

We now have been Working Differently at Deloitte for over a year. A recent survey conducted across the firm indicates that the initiative has had a positive impact on our people and is making inroads into transforming the workplace. 96.6% of respondents believe that Working Differently is a good talent attraction tool. The survey also indicated that 20% of our staff indicated that they apply Working Differently principles all the time and 65% applied it occasionally to their work schedules.

Our Principles of Work
We at Deloitte …
1) … support flexibility and choice in terms of where, when and how we work.
2) … recognise that the expectations of our external and our internal clients as well as the expectations of the individual, their manager, their team and their business unit are taken into account when considering Working Differently.
3) … challenge the widespread perception that “face time” or visibility in the office automatically equals productivity.
4) … accept that there is no “one size fits all” solution in terms of how, when and where we work and that everyone should be treated as an individual within the guidelines set out.
5) … recognise that a relationship of trust, respect, open communication and clearly defined deliverables between staff and managers is one of the essentials to make Working Differently successful.
6) … acknowledge that some roles are more suited to Working Differently than others due to the nature of the work.
7) … accept that our strategy to be Exceptionally Client Centric may result in circumstances when Working Differently may not be appropriate.
8) … expect that every arrangement should be negotiated between the individual and the person they report to.
9) …. accept that the success of Working Differently will be the shared responsibility of the individual and the person/s they report to.

Compensation and Benefits

Deloitte appointed a dedicated National Reward manager and a Reward consultant to focus on the rewards and benefits in the organisation.

The Reward and Analytics team tracks trends in reward and benefits practices and provides market analysis and best practice advice towards providing reward that reflects levels of responsibility, skill and output and that compensation and benefits are competitive within the marketplace.

Two key processes have been upgraded in the past year:

  • The process of obtaining market benchmarking information was streamlined with the participation in an online survey system.
  • Real-time employee information was made available through data analytics to the business leaders on-line.

Employee relations and governance

There were two significant developments in the application of staff policies in the past year.

Implementation of dedicated Non-Permanent Workforce unit and ContractorSmart
A team dedicated to managing the HR functions relating to non-permanent employees (contractors) was initiated, beginning with Consulting and rolling out to the entire firm during the past next year. Led by Chantelle de Chazal, the Non-Permanent Workforce (NPW) team implemented the Deloitte SmarTax software, ContractorSmart, to manage the complex tax and legal arrangements for contractors. The GHR&D NPW team assesses all non-permanent workforce relationships and advises on the correct legal and tax relationships.

Having all non-permanent employment relationships being housed in one area, Deloitte is now able to track any independence risks quickly and take effective action if needed.

Policy management tool
Our Cambrient policy management tool provides online access to all policies within the firm, allowing policy administrators to maintain and communicate current policies.


Employee Well-Being Programme

Through the Employee Well-being Programme (EWP) we empower our staff and their families to successfully achieve a work-life balance and to live an enriched life. Personal support and information is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, from qualified, experienced counsellors. The service offers information and guidance on different aspects of life, including: financial advice, legal issues, relationships, family matters, substance abuse, work, stress, trauma, debt and health issues.

Deloitte in South Africa and Namibia is partnered by Independent Counselling & Advisory Services (ICAS) to provide our people and their immediate family members access to a full range of counselling and support services.

In the past year ICAS have implemented debt management services, to assist financially-stressed employees with advice and debt mediation services.

The online health information service, e-Care, has also been upgraded and now offers self-directed learning on diverse range of change programmes.


EWP events are arranged regionally and within business units, and have included ergonomics, stress management, cancer and HIV awareness and financial well-being.

Reasons to love working at Deloitte

Taking care

  • Comprehensive medical scheme  With progressive and income plans to accommodate diverse needs of employees
  • Retirement funding through Pension and Provident fund with flexible member choice contribution levels from 7.5% to 27.5% Total contribution
  • 24 hour disability and life cover for the members

In-house services

  • In house travel services, ATM, DVD rental services , Weighless (in Woodlands)
  • Time2 employee concierge services (Consulting)
  • Muslim prayer room (in Woodlands and Cape Town)
  • Christian fellowship group
  • Blood donation clinics

Brain train

  • E-Learning available to all staff, Books 24X7
  • ABET facilities (Adult English Education)
  • Financial study assistance and bursaries for staff
  • Exam study leave
  • Personal coaching
  • Trainee board support
  • Unrestricted use of knowledge management resources
  • myJourneyCentre and myBusinessSchool for trainees

Time out

  • Social events, month end drinks
  • Sports days, company hospitality at large sports events
  • Paid office closure in December
  • Fully paid maternity leave / paternity leave

Dress for success

  • Subsidised uniforms for Receptionists and Tea ladies
  • Business casual dress code

Caring for others

  • Annual IMPACT Day (1 full day of community service)
  • Helping Hands voluntary giving scheme
  • Deloitte Foundation

Employee Wellness Programme

  • Onsite wellness days and events
  • Access to 24 hour counselling through ICAS For all employees in need and for their immediate families.
  • Debt management services through ICAS (provided by Summit)
  • Financial and Loans expertise through Interface Excel.
  • Online information through e-Care (


Health and Safety

More and more, Deloitte and its clients are faced with security challenges at all levels that could potentially impact how we conduct our business and put the safety and security of our people at risk.

In response to this challenge, Exco established a Security Office for the Southern African firm, aligned with the Global Security Office in early 2009. Our Security Office will provide strategic and operational management oversight and integration for the following risk management areas:

  • Occupational Health and Safety
  • Travel Security
  • Business Continuity Management
  • Information Technology Security
  • Physical Security

During the course of the last financial year Deloitte has invested a great deal of time and effort in order to ensure the safety and security of our employees.

Occupational Health and Safety (OHS)

  • Part of OHS is to ensure that buildings are compliant in terms of the OHSACT
  • Relevant fire, medical and evacuation personnel are trained
  • Evacuation routes are clearly indicated
  • Plans are tested (this has not happened yet)

Travel Security

  • Deloitte can successfully track employees on international business provided that flights are booked though Rennies Travel. This is possible through a global agreement with Rennies and the Global Security Office providing booking and accommodation information for security purposes.
  • Deloitte has implemented travel security cards to all employees while on international business. This provides employees with medical and security assistance 24 hours a day. This provides assistance in cases relating to emergency evacuation in life threatening circumstances.
  • Deloitte currently provides employees with local travel security advice on potentially dangerous situations.
  • Deloitte also provides to its employees guidance and learning is several security categories.

Business Continuity Management (BCM) is important for the following reasons:

  • The first priority is the safety and well-being of staff, clients and other individuals conducting business at Deloitte premises
  • The second priority is the wellbeing of the environment and society in which the organisation operates
  • The third priority is the recovery of critical business processes which are required to sustain operations

Deloitte has recognised the potential human, financial and operational losses associated with a service interruption and the importance of maintaining viable crisis management, emergency response and business continuity strategies.

Our BCM Programme is intended to provide a framework for developing plans to ensure the safety of employees and the resumption of time sensitive operations and services in the event of an emergency such as fire, power or communications blackout, flood, civil disturbance or any type of personnel absenteeism.

Deloitte will maintain the following sets of plans in order to ensure an effective BCM Programme.

  • Emergency Response Policy (ERP) – Procedures that address the initial reaction and activities to ensure the safety of all personnel as well as to work with emergency personnel to minimise or contain the current situation.
  • Crisis Management Plan (CMP) – Procedures that address the roles and responsibilities around specific incidents and coordinates the decisions and communications throughout the crisis event. Included in these would be public relations and crisis communication activities. These procedures should also address activation requirements for the BCM Programme.
  • Business Continuity Management (BCM) - The element of BCM which deals specifically with the resumption of specific tasks necessary to recover critical functions/processes in the event of a disaster, including personnel, essential records, equipment supplies, work space, communication facilities, work stations, fax, copy machines, mail services, etc.
  • Business Continuity Plans (BCP) - Activities and programmes designed to return the information technology services, which support the business operations, to an acceptable condition.

Information Security Management
The Global Security Office maintains a variety of tools and resources related to technology security. Regular awareness programmes are run with staff to ensure that they are kept up-to-date with changes in risks to information security.

Physical Security
Physical security refers to the safety and security of our physical premises. It ensures that Deloitte can respond quickly to incidents that effect aspects relating to of our people, buildings and assets.

Stay connected:


Material on this website is © 2014 Deloitte Global Services Limited, or a member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, or one of their affiliates. See Legal for copyright and other legal information.

Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms.

Get connected
Share your comments



More on Deloitte
Learn about our site


Recently blogged