People Practices & Governance Standards

The SABPP continues its journey to set standards for people practices in organisations and to professionalise HR and people management. The journey began in 2013 with the launch of the SABPP HR Management Standard (HRMS) and HR Management System Standards Model, which brought together the HR community to define the body of knowledge of, and standards of good practice for the profession. The reviewed HRMS is renamed as the SABPP People Practices and Governance Standard (PPGS) and with it the Model is renamed as the People Practices System Standard Model. This is given the evolving context, discourse, practices, and increasing trend to rename HR as the people function.

The National HRM Standard as a governance mechanism

The HRMS is intended to set out the minimum set of good HR practices that any organisation (large or small) should have in place in order to build an aligned, engaged, and productive workforce that will achieve the organisation’s objectives. Because of the integrated nature of the HRMS, it is important for organisations to pay attention to all the elements of the HRMS in designing and implementing their HR All People Strategy, processes, and practices.

The spirit of the HRMS is to improve the quality and consistency of sound HR management, and so, using the National People Practices and Governance Standards from a continuous improvement perspective will raise the bar on HR management, and thus create more effective organisations. While the HRMS provides the overarching framework for sound HR practice, it does not impose methodologies or specific methods, leaving the choice of the most appropriate methodology to each organisation.

The 2023 update to the HRMS and Model

In the decade from the launch in 2013, the HRMS has increasingly been adopted in both industry and academia. During this time our context and the world of work has evolved and continues to evolve, with fundamental changes to work, the workplace and the workforce. We identified the need to respond strategically to these changes, and to ensure that the organisation’s duty of care to employees and the broader stakeholders is implemented. To take account of the many changes over the period to the external context of HR work and changes within the profession, the review of the HRMS was formally launched in 2022 following approval by the SABPP Board. Consultative workshops and specialist working groups helped review the HRMS approach and the contents of each   Standard to determine to what extent good practice had changed over the decade and how we should position the Standards in the new world of work. The review addressed how we understand our evolving context and the new world of work and how we continue to set standards of good people practices for our context and world of work.

As a result of this review, the title of the Model and Standard has been updated to the SABPP People Practices System Model and the People Practices and Governance Standard (PPGS) respectively. This change underlines the nature of HR work in formulating and supporting people management practices across the organisation. Below is the revised Model:

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