n Journal of Public Administration - Barriers to implementing employment equity in a government department

Volume 54 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0036-0767


The primary objective of the study was to identify barriers towards the implementation of employment equity (EE). The literature review revealed that personal, organisational, and non-organisational barriers exist. The research approach was qualitative, and twenty-one participants were purposively selected, with data saturation being used to determine the sample size. The research protocol was developed from the literature review, and data were collected by means of face-to-face interviews. Prior to data collection, the interview protocol was piloted with four participants at the selected provincial government department. Data were analysed manually using content analysis. The major finding at the personal level was that funding or bursaries for skills development of employees are barriers to EE implementation. The most important finding at organisational level was that the moratorium on the filling of vacant positions was a barrier to EE implementation. At the non-organisational level, it was found that cadre development and skills shortages within the country are barriers to EE implementation. The results of the study add value to the literature on EE, and highlight the practical implications for line managers, labour relations and transformation practitioners.

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