The Ministry of Health and Population of the Democratic Republic of Congo confirmed the outbreak of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in the Bikoro area of Equateur Province on May 8, 2018. On August 1, 2018, new Ebola virus cases have been reported in the North Kivu Province once again by the Ministry of Health. The World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners are responding fast to establish the full extent of the new outbreak cases.
According to the latest reports by the WHO, a total of 77 Ebola cases have been reported as of August 5, 2018. Of the 77 cases, 16 have been confirmed as positive, 27 are identified as probable, and there are a total of 34 confirmed deaths A multinational multiagency outbreak response is still ongoing.
In light of recent events, employers in the NGO sector are quickly scaling up their emergency response. Many employers have reached out to Birches Group to understand how best to respond to the crisis, and to find out what actions have been taken by others. To address this need, Birches Group conducted a Special Measures Survey for employers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) during the months of June and July 2018.
Nineteen employers participated in the Special Measures Survey where employers were first asked to identify locations in the country where they currently have offices. Majority of the respondents reported to have offices in Kinshasa (79%), while the rest have offices in Eastern Congo (52.6%), Lubumbashi (21%) and other cities including Mbandaka, Lualaba, Kasai, Goma and Bukavu (36.8%).
Only one out of the nineteen survey respondents reported that they differentiate the compensation package of staff based on location; all other survey respondents apply the same compensation and benefits package to all local staff.
Additionally, survey participants were also asked to indicate if any actions have been taken beyond normal pay practices to address the volatile situation in the DRC labor market following the Ebola outbreak.
Survey results show that 63% have not taken any action or foresee to take any action in the next few months, while 37% of respondents have taken specific actions such as provision of year-end bonus, extended medical coverage for employees and dependents and provision of life insurance benefits to be the most common since the outbreak.
Birches Group recommends that every employer in the Democratic Republic of Congo have a Special Measures Policy in place that outlines the proactive steps the employer will take when unforeseen and uncontrollable events occur. A Special Measures Policy allows employers to act quickly and make informed decisions based on specific triggers and processes, while still adhering to a market-based approach to compensation management. Most importantly, a policy provides clarity to both employees and managers.
Birches Group publishes updated compensation and benefits survey data in the Democratic Republic of Congo three times a year, in April, July and October. These ongoing updates enable subscribers to get current information on market movement when you need it.
Birches Group can also assist employers in developing their own Special Measures Policy, to help address not only emergency cases such as an Ebola outbreak, but also high devaluation, inflation, and other non-economic events such as natural disasters.
An Executive Summary of the results can be reviewed here (PDF). Access to the full Special Measures Survey is also available. For more information, please contact us.
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