The Britehouse Group has been awarded accreditation as a Top Empowered Company in the fifteenth annual assessment by research house, Impumelelo, according to criteria aligned with the revised codes prescribed by the Department of Trade and Industry (dti).
The dti is an Impumelelo strategic partner as are the Black Business Council and University of Cape Town Graduate Business School (UCT GBS)
The criteria applied by Impumelelo in assessing South African companies for their transformation capabilities include ownership, management control, skills development, new enterprise and supplier development, and socio economic development.
Britehouse Group head of organisational effectiveness and also of transformation, Themba Chakela, says that the accreditation validates the company's transformation methodology, of "doing the right thing for the right reasons.
"The Britehouse ethos is one of synergy, holism, and integration. In our core business of technology implementations and provision of technology services, we never do just enough to fulfill a customer brief. We look at the whole picture and do what makes sense in terms of the customer's overall sustainability.
"Logically, therefore, we approach transformation from the same perspective: the sustainability of our society and economy. We're Proudly South African. So, inherently, we must be a microcosm of the broader community.
"Strategically, we differentiate ourselves on our ability to find transformative solutions for customers at the technology level. We can be creative enough to do this only if our workforce is diverse and, therefore, gives us access to the full breadth and depth of innovation capacity inherent in our population.
"Also, we are an African company applying international technologies such as SAP and Microsoft to African circumstances. We could not do that effectively if we didn't have people on our teams who not only understand local conditions but can bridge the two worlds in ways that are most relevant and beneficial to our customers.
"From every point of view, therefore, transformation is a strategic driver for us. If we approached it only for the sake of compliance or achieving the required numbers on a scorecard, our business would fail."
Britehouse's holistic approach to transformation calls for its internal and external empowerment activities to be fully integrated. With Chakela ensuring, internally, that employees are hired and promoted for their ability to add value to the company, colleague Emmeline Bester, head of corporate social development, focuses on applying the same criteria externally to skills development, enterprise development, supplier development, and corporate social investment.
Under her leadership, the Britehouse GOT-GAME Digital POP-UP has been established, along with the #67 Day Digital Activation Movement. The POP-UP is a container equipped with smart technology and Internet access and provisioned with an online repository of skills development resources provided by the Seta accredited Mentec Foundation.
It can be replicated easily anywhere in the world, slashing the cost, time, and effort of implementing transformation and development projects. Companies have the option of co-locating their enterprise development and corporate social responsibility initiatives in the Britehouse POP-UPs or sponsoring their own.
Layered on top of the POP-UP, the #67 Day Digital Activation Movement encourages corporates to implement transformation projects in 67-day cycles, enabling communities to benefit from projects in a purpose-driven timeframe while ensuring the benefits are sustained through the iterative process. This approach enables the positive impact on communities to scale development and impact exponentially.
Bester points out the communities that benefit from GOT-GAME and the #67 Day Movement become the source of organisations' suppliers, employees, and, ultimately, through enterprise development, their future markets.
"We therefore believe that every corporate social investment should feed back into an overall, integrated process. We also ensure that each of our own projects creates a multiplier effect. Britehouse GOT-GAME digital POP-UP, for instance, is managed by one our enterprise development beneficiaries who, in turn, empowers small enterprises through GOT-GAME.
"That's what transformation at Britehouse is all about – taking the risk on human potential, because it's the right thing to do."