It is however not just employment that attracts people to work at SORAS Group. The Group is credited with a strong policy on human resource development and retention as well as a number of benefits accorded to the employees towards improving their quality of life.
SORAS Group is currently composed of three companies---SORAS Group Ltd, SORAS ASSURANCES GENERALES (AG) Ltd and SORAS VIE Ltd. Each of the three companies is independent in terms of management, budget and operations but their employees follow the same policy and have access to equal opportunities and benefits.
The Chief Administrative Officer at SORAS Group Ltd, Béatrice Kayitesi says that the group abides to the labour code but employees are also required to follow internal rules and regulations. One of the requirements of the labour law is the willingness of the employer to allow employees to appoint representatives. SORAS Group has
honoured this requirement.
On recruitment, Kayitesi explains that the Group has a very clear policy which is followed while a new employee is being hired. This policy is also based on while determining the salaries. When any of the three subsidiaries of the Group wants to hire an employee, the requirements are first set and the job advertisement is disseminated through the media. But the Group can also decide to hire a new employee through a process called head-hunting.
This is done when the Group is aware that a certain employee working at another institution in Rwanda or abroad is capable of occupying the vacant position. At this stage, the Group opens negotiations with the potential employee and if both parties come to agree on the terms, the candidate is hired. In the situation when the Group has to advertise a vacant post, the candidates are required to meet the requirements and then are subjected to written and oral tests and the recruitment panel at the SORAS Group will decide who has emerged the best candidate to be hired. Other methods used are internal promotion or direct recruitment from universities.
On remuneration, the new employee is paid a salary based on the established salary structure. But the employees hired through head-hunting may ask for higher salaries because of the extra qualities that they will bring to the Group. The established salary structure helps to avoid bias.
On promotion from a junior position to a senior position, SORAS Group also has roadmap that it follows. Kayitesi notes that promotion considers an employees’ experience, education, decent behaviour, qualification and the level of professional training the employee has undergone. But there is an important aspect which also influences promotion of an employee from one level to another. Kayitesi says that the employee performance appraisal is very critical in promoting an employee from a junior level to a senior position.
She says that once the employee has a poor appraisal, it is likely that this certain employee will not be promoted. In fact an employee who scores below 50% in the performance appraisal is required to step down and leave the Group. Each year, the employees are required to sign performance contracts which are evaluated twice a year.
Kayitesi says that SORAS Group has a very strong and transparent policy on human resource development as a way of keeping its employees at the top of the industry something that boosts their productivity. For instance, the Group prioritises professional training courses in areas of insurance, reinsurance, finance, accounting, audit and Information Technology (IT). These trainings are held in the country or out side.
Benefits towards improving
Apart from salary packages that SORAS Group gives to its employees, the Group also supports the employees in many other ways. For instance, each month, the company contributes of an employee’s gross salary to a private pension fund. The employee also contributes the same percentages bringing a big total savings annually. This is different from the mandatory retirement contributions made through the Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB). Staff members are also eligible to receive an advance payment of three months of their salary with no interest added.
This also helps the employees to improve the quality of their life. Employees and their families also benefit from the Group’s medical insurance which covers 90% of the expenses and the remaining 10% comes from the employee.
Each year, when the company makes a profit, the employees receive a bonus. The employees who have worked at the Group for a period of 10, 20, 25 and 30 years also receive bonus.With support of the company, the employees also created a solidarity fund, through which they contribute money and can borrow from it anytime. As the Group celebrates 30 years, Kayitesi commends the employees for their dedication to the Group and urges them to remain focused on creating value for the employer.