Thea Marais graduated from the University of Cape Town with a Bachelor of Social Science majoring in Sociology, followed by a Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management. Further qualifications include an Advanced Labour Law Diploma through UNISA, obtained with distinction and certification from the CCMA having completed their Conciliation and Arbitration programmes with distinction.
Thea’s early experience was in the Furniture Manufacturing where she established and headed up the HR departments of Alpine Upholstery in Epping, Cape Town, and thereafter at Edblo Bedding based in Industria, Johannesburg.
On returning to the Cape in 1994, she joined the Clothing Manufacturing Industry and was employed by Cape Underwear Manufacturers, a leading supplier to major retailers both nationally and internationally and a member of the Seardel Group (Pty) Ltd. Here she served on the Board of Directors in the position of Human Resource Director.
These roles equipped her with valuable hands-on experience in several fields including industrial relations, strategic human resource management, training and development and general human resources. Through her tenure on the Board of Directors she also gained insight into strategic business issues and productivity management.
In 2001, Thea launched her own consulting practice, Thea Marais Consulting (TMC) offering a general Human Resource and Industrial Relations service to clients across various industries including the Clothing industry through the Cape Clothing Association. In order to expand her presence within the Cape Town area, she merged TMC with Vive Transitions, an equally established human resource management practice in 2010.
Thea offers clients a generalist human resource service across the full spectrum of people, policy, performance and EE/BEE. An example of projects she has been involved in includes:
•Establishment of an HR Information System (currently used internally by People Partners for HR data management) and the implementation of HR information systems at various companies in the Clothing and Engineering Industry.
•Establishment of an HR function for a Packaging company in order to meet compliance with various local and international retailers systems and ethical requirements.
•Development of a Code of Best Practice for Managing Absenteeism for the Clothing Bargaining Council.
•Conducting public workshops on a range of Industrial Relations and Employment Equity issues for the Cape Clothing Association and independently.
•Establishment of an HR function and ongoing management thereof in compliance with ISO 9001 standards for a Project Engineering Company.
•Establishment of Employment Equity compliance in a number of companies in various industries.
•Assisting various clients to optimize their BEE scorecards and prepare for verification.
•Implementation of performance management and remuneration structuring in various organisations.
•Strategic HR management and organizational re-alignment.
•Development and implementation of policies and procedures.
•Successful defence of clients at the CCMA or comprehensive preparation for arbitration.