Learnership Management System

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BEE scoring

Companies do not achieve levels 2 or 3 by mistake or by ticking boxes. BEE is a very time consuming and complex business task. It needs to be implemented with carefully planned methodologies, which is then properly implemented and monitored in a way that makes complete business sense.

Companies that succeed with BEE understand what needs to be done intrinsically and are fully committed to proper implementation. We have prepared various best practices that need to be in place to fully succeed at B-BBEE.

The Right Mindset

B-BBEE is not a singular once off project. It is a long term process that needs to be included in the company’s everyday activities. B-BBEE needs to be seen as an essential process in a company. Not an afterthought, or an irritation.

Ensure that every person involved with earning points (however remote or seemingly distant to the process) fully understands what BEE is and how it affects their component of the business. A “rogue” manager in a branch of the company could ensure that your targets are constantly missed because they are not prepared to meet them.

The Right Team

Appoint one person who is ultimately responsible for BEE – the BEE Champion. This person is usually the CEO/MD and has the authoritative power to invest in the activities that will gain points. That person is the critical link between strategy and implementation by driving and supporting BEE in all aspects of the business.

The secondary team is then made up of “implementers” or “Element Owners”. These are employees who are experts in their respective fields. It is not very surprising that an HR manager is not fully able to grasp the intricate details of Procurement or the financials. Vice versa an accounting or legal orientated person will not be able to fully relate to a company’s training needs nor know how to effectively manage the learning process.

There are seven elements, but sometimes one person can cover two or three elements. The element owners’ job is to implement best practices for the element. It is not to do all the work in that element! Policies for each element must be set up and followed. Policies must be easy to understand and easy to follow.

Policies that are 50 pages long and completely unworkable and unachievable! All staff associated with the element must be able to give positive input and be conversant with the policy. It may be a cliché, but this is the way to get everyone working as a team towards a common goal.

Policies

Set up policies to further support BEE. This becomes the internal message that all staff will be aware of and how BEE affects their job, and how they can contribute to BEE.

As BEE is sometimes seen as an emotional issue this must be handled as well, often via effective change management. Staff must be kept motivated – if they see BEE as a “taking away their jobs” or “giving them jobs” – it will be counterproductive.

Constant Implementation

If the BEE process is managed well you will be able to implement BEE transactions regularly. Many aspects that earn you points are implemented daily. Preferential Procurement is a great example of that – you are purchasing from suppliers every day. You need to understand the impact of each purchasing decision on the scorecard. A key benefit is that you already have a good idea of how many points your supplier base will give you. In addition you will be able to move some spend from lesser compliant suppliers to more compliant suppliers.

Regular Monitoring

From a management viewpoint, BEE must be measured regularly, ie every month. The BEE champion should produce a scorecard every month, just like the financial director produces monthly management accounts. A scorecard calculator is an essential part of this process. Apart from a scorecard calculator helping with current calculations it will also help with scenario planning and future preparation to ensure that the high score is always maintained.

Strategic Planning

Long term strategies must be implemented, be achievable and measurable. For example it is not feasible to improve employment equity or procurement overnight. A long term strategy is needed. This strategy should integrate past results with anticipated future results. Most importantly the strategy should compare what the company wants to achieve with the costs vs budgets allocated and the feasibility of achieving that target.

Strategise at the right time in the BEE Process. BEE is measured retrospectively. The strategies you implement now might only be measured in as much as one and a half years time.

Leadership Qualities of a Project Manager

Inspires a Shared Vision

An effective project leader is often described as having a vision of where to go and the ability to articulate it. Visionaries thrive on change and being able to draw new boundaries. It was once said that a leader is someone who “lifts us up, gives us a reason for being and gives the vision and spirit to change.” Visionary leaders enable people to feel they have a real stake in the project. They empower people to experience the vision on their own. According to Bennis “They offer people opportunities to create their own vision, to explore what the vision will mean to their jobs and lives, and to envision their future as part of the vision for the organization.” (Bennis, 1997)

A Good Communicator

The ability to communicate with people at all levels is almost always named as the second most important skill by project managers and team members. Project leadership calls for clear communication about goals, responsibility, performance, expectations and feedback.

There is a great deal of value placed on openness and directness. The project leader is also the team’s link to the larger organization. The leader must have the ability to effectively negotiate and use persuasion when necessary to ensure the success of the team and project. Through effective communication, project leaders support individual and team achievements by creating explicit guidelines for accomplishing results and for the career advancement of team members.

Integrity

One of the most important things a project leader must remember is that his or her actions, and not words, set the modus operandi for the team. Good leadership demands commitment to, and demonstration of, ethical practices. Creating standards for ethical behavior for oneself and living by these standards, as well as rewarding those who exemplify these practices, are responsibilities of project leaders. Leadership motivated by self-interest does not serve the well being of the team. Leadership based on integrity represents nothing less than a set of values others share, behavior consistent with values and dedication to honesty with self and team members. In other words the leader “walks the talk” and in the process earns trust.

Enthusiasm

Plain and simple, we don’t like leaders who are negative – they bring us down. We want leaders with enthusiasm, with a bounce in their step, with a can-do attitude. We want to believe that we are part of an invigorating journey – we want to feel alive. We tend to follow people with a can-do attitude, not those who give us 200 reasons why something can’t be done. Enthusiastic leaders are committed to their goals and express this commitment through optimism. Leadership emerges as someone expresses such confident commitment to a project that others want to share his or her optimistic expectations. Enthusiasm is contagious and effective leaders know it.

Empathy

What is the difference between empathy and sympathy? Although the words are similar, they are, in fact, mutually exclusive. According to Norman Paul, in sympathy the subject is principally absorbed in his or her own feelings as they are projected into the object and has little concern for the reality and validity of the object’s special experience. Empathy, on the other hand, presupposes the existence of the object as a separate individual, entitled to his or her own feelings, ideas and emotional history (Paul, 1970). As one student so eloquently put it, “It’s nice when a project leader acknowledges that we all have a life outside of work.”

Competence

Simply put, to enlist in another’s cause, we must believe that that person knows what he or she is doing. Leadership competence does not however necessarily refer to the project leader’s technical abilities in the core technology of the business. As project management continues to be recognized as a field in and of itself, project leaders will be chosen based on their ability to successfully lead others rather than on technical expertise, as in the past. Having a winning track record is the surest way to be considered competent. Expertise in leadership skills is another dimension in competence. The ability to challenge, inspire, enable, model and encourage must be demonstrated if leaders are to be seen as capable and competent.

Ability to Delegate Tasks

Trust is an essential element in the relationship of a project leader and his or her team. You demonstrate your trust in others through your actions – how much you check and control their work, how much you delegate and how much you allow people to participate. Individuals who are unable to trust other people often fail as leaders and forever remain little more that micro-managers, or end up doing all of the work themselves. As one project management student put it, “A good leader is a little lazy.” An interesting perspective!

Cool Under Pressure

In a perfect world, projects would be delivered on time, under budget and with no major problems or obstacles to overcome. But we don’t live in a perfect world – projects have problems. A leader with a hardy attitude will take these problems in stride. When leaders encounter a stressful event, they consider it interesting, they feel they can influence the outcome and they see it as an opportunity. “Out of the uncertainty and chaos of change, leaders rise up and articulate a new image of the future that pulls the project together.” (Bennis 1997) And remember – never let them see you sweat.

Team-Building Skills

A team builder can best be defined as a strong person who provides the substance that holds the team together in common purpose toward the right objective. In order for a team to progress from a group of strangers to a single cohesive unit, the leader must understand the process and dynamics required for this transformation. He or she must also know the appropriate leadership style to use during each stage of team development. The leader must also have an understanding of the different team players styles and how to capitalize on each at the proper time, for the problem at hand.

Problem Solving Skills

Although an effective leader is said to share problem-solving responsibilities with the team, we expect our project leaders to have excellent problem-solving skills themselves. They have a “fresh, creative response to here-and-now opportunities,” and not much concern with how others have performed them. (Kouzes 1987)

https://www.trainyoucan.co.za/training/?page_id=7648

How Can I Implement a Learnership

Read more on…. Learnership Tracking Tools in South Africa

ABOUT

The following main steps have to be taken before implementing a learnership:

  • Choose a learnership
    Iniitially you have to decide which skills you need and if the training needed can be covered by a laernership you want to implement. A list of available learnerships can be found on the Department of Labour’s website. A list of learnerships is available at ever labour centre or can be obtained from the Learnership Support Service at the Department of Labour. Remember – you can choose any learnership irrespective of which SETA developed and registered it.
  • Apply for a learnership grant
    In addition to the 60% of levy, which can be claimed for a workplace skills plan and the implementation report (learnerships are a very good way of implementing training) you may apply for a learnership grant once you have entered a learnership agreement.
  • Establish an employment contract for unemployed learners
    Make sure that you have an employment contract that complies with the learnership determination published by the Minister of Labour for the period of the learnership. The learnership determination document can be found on the Department of Labour’s website, but a copy is also available at each labour centre or can be obtained from the Learnership Support Service.
  • Get copies of the learnership agreement
    A learnership agreement must be signed by the employer, learner and a training provider. Obtain copies of the format of the learnership agreement from SETAs, your nearest labour centre or the Learnership Support Service.
  • Identify a mentor
    Identify the person who is going to be the learner’s mentor within your organisation. This person will guide the learner and help him/her deal with any problems.
  • Choose a provider
    Decide on a provider who will provide the theoretical part of the learnership. Make sure that the provider you choose is accredited by a SETA. If you need help with choosing a provider, contact your SETA.
  • Choose a learner
    • You can choose someone who is already in your employment – as described by the Skills Development Act in section 18(1) – “employed learner: if a learner was in the employment of the employer party to the learnership agreement concerned when the agreement was concluded, the learner’s contract of employment is not affected by the agreement” OR
    • You can choose someone as described by the Skills Development Act in section 18(2): “unemployed learner: if the learner was not in the employment of the employer party to the learnership agreement concerned when the agreement was concluded, the employer and learner must enter into a contract of employment.”

    For an employed learner, you will continue with their current employment contract and you will only have to sign a learnership agreement. For a previously unemployed person, you will have to sign both the learnership agreement and an employment contract. There are also differences in the grants and tax breaks as outlined above.

    If you are going to consider an unemployed learner, the nearest labour centre can assist you in selecting and recruiting the right person. A separate brochure is available from the Department on its recruitment and selection service and the ways in which it can assist you to recruit unemployed people into learnerships.

    Employers who provide training and work experience through a learnership to unemployed people are under no obligation to offer the qualified learner permanent employment once the training is completed. It is hoped that employers will be able to recruit at least some, but even if they cannot, the learners will have a qualification and work experience.

  • Sign the learnership agreement
    There are two contracts that you will need to understand:

    • The learnership agreement
    • The employment contract

    a) A learnership agreement is a legal contract signed by an employer, a learner (or parents and guardians in the case of a minor) and a training provider.

    A learnership agreement specifies:

    • What the training is designed to achieve, for example the qualification that the learner will earn and the skills she/he should be able to perform.
    • What the responsibilities and rights are of the employer, the learner and the training provider.

    b) You will also have to sign an employment contract if you are taking on a previously unemployed learner (18(2)).

    A draft learnership agreement as well as other information on contracting can be obtained from your SETA, from a labour centre or from the Learnership Support Service.

  • Start the learnership 
    Once the above arrangements are finalised, the implementation of the learnership can begin.
  • Employment and Skills Development Agencies (ESDAs)
    The Department of Labour will be implementing a pilot programme for ESDAs over a three-year period commencing late in 2003. The ESDA pilot programme aims to assist with the placement of learners into learnerships within the small, micro and medium enterprise (SMME) sector.ESDAs will be established and will act as the employer of learners. ESDAs perform all the duties of an employer, but they do not provide the work experience part of the training. The ESDA manages the placement of learners with host employers/on-the-job trainers and registered training providers. The hosts are usually SMMEs.The ESDA pilot programme is aimed at providing learnerships for unemployed young people (under 35).The ESDA undertakes a number of associated functions that are usually the responsibility of an employer. These functions include:

    • Direct dealing with government agencies
    • Entering into long-term employment and training contracts
    • Handling all government legislative requirements, such as taxation, payroll or other “red tape”
    • The selection of high quality learners
    • Arranging and monitoring the on and off-the-job training
    • Ensuring suitable on-the-job training by rotation through various employers
    • Counseling and problem-solving for both employers and learners.

    From an employer’s perspective, the flexibility to be able to participate in the training system without the administrative obligations normally associated with learnerships, is a major attraction.

Learnership Tracking

PLUMS = Project Learner Update Management System (PLUMS) is a projected created by the TRAINYOUCAN Accredited Training Network to assist private training providers and corporate companies to:

Click here to ream more about our Learnership Tracking Software

  • Track learner’s personal detail, record keeping and communication.
  • Track learner achievements on both short course and qualifications. (Multiple modules or Unit Standards)
  •  Assist with general report writing, executive reporting and SETA quarterly reporting.
  • Assist your company with South Africa BEE and SARS reporting.
  • Easy accessible, general operation including backup process.
  • Able to customize to specific needs.
  • Integration with other software packages
  • Export of information for alternative manipulation extensions, such as text and excel format.

More detail regarding this project including support and a discussion forum will also be made available on our forum www.learnershipstracking.co.za.

Project Learner Update Management System (PLUMS) also knows as LMS is a software application or Web-based technology used to manage a specific learning process.

Different types of Learning Management Systems are available:

TYPES OF PROGRAMMES FEEDBACK INCLUDED
1. Learning Management System that incorporates elearning delivery. Any standard elearning product will be able to offer this service and manages the learner achievements. We currently do not offer elearning solutions. NO
2.Learning Management System that focuses on the delivery and interaction of a programme. This normally include learner details, class schedules, courses attended, grade books. We currently do not offer this function. NO
3.Learner achievement records for reporting structures. This function is available on any major payroll system that also produces standard equity reports. Purpose of report writing in relation between staff current statistics and achievement records, many times by region, type, sex, race and similar criteria. NO
4. Project Management Software that manage the progress of a short programme or learnership. Manage current project such as short courses and learnerships that may consist out of a various modules such as unit standards to track the progress of the project and learners for SETA, Equity, SARS and BEE reporting. YES

 

Our Project Learner Update Management System (PLUMS)  is aimed as a simple and user friendly tracking system targeted for individual project managers, small and large training centres (from Training Providers and Corporate Companies) including NGO’s to track the progress of their learners on current projects.

 

Our Goal:

  • To keep it simple, but also effective and very user friendly.
  • Easy to install and accessibility, mobile, transferability between devices, remote access and able to produce user own backups.
  • Keep all projects open source to allow for individual branding and customization.
  • Easy report writing and exporting to text, csv and excel for additional processing.

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