Ten things to look for in a learnership partner

Having an ongoing learnership programme yields many rewards for the companies involved, and these range from increments to the Broad-based Black Empowerment Equity rating, SARS tax-breaks of up to R50 000 per learner per anum, as well asreduced overhead costs and sundry considering that a typical learner costs a third of what an entry-level staff member does –the former having the advantage of having been trained on reasoning skills, customer service and communication skills, to skim through a few learnership benefits.

But the most crucial and often unobserved question is how to identify an accredited and authorised learnership partner? We’ll deal with this query in 10 bullets to be precise…

  1. Quality people: Training being a foregone conclusion, the process has to start at the recruitment stage with the screening of the candidate pool. Any relationship that exists between a recruiter and said learnership partner is advantageous in choosing the best nominees.
  2. Cost of candidates: You want a learnership partner that guarantees motivated learners at a fraction of the cost. The ball-park rule is that learners will cost a third of the entry-level market value.
  3. Nationally recognised certifier: The learnership partner should have the necessary SETA accreditation to certify learner applicants that exit the learnership with an accredited and high quality qualification
  4. Candidate short-listing capabilities: On average, only around five to ten percent of nominees that apply for learnerships are worth being consideredfor a skills development program. The learnership partner should have sound processes to carry out or oversee a selection process effectively and fairly. Again, ongoing collaboration with a recruitment agency is vital.
  5. Meet 100-90-80-70 standard: SETA has parameters in place which call for 100% of projects to be completed by learners, 90% learner retention during the program, 80% of applicants to acquire national certification and that 70% find permanent positions with host employers.
  6. Consistent track-record: The learnership partner’s ability to get things done correctly and in an effective and standardised fashion.
  7. Highly effective monitoring system: Legitimate learnership partners need effective monitoring tools to track learner progress and alert management of any implementation problems in order to trigger corrective action.
  8. Proprietary evaluation tool:Used by prospective learnership partner to track project’s impact and return on investment (ROI) to ensure training leads to measurable outcome.
  9. Compliance: You should be able to rely upon a learnership provider to assist when it comes tothe implementation of good-practice operational and learning compliance measures, be it by way of efficient admin, relevant contractual submissions etc.
  10. BBEEE: Anyone who promises to help you improve the Broadbased Black Empowerment Equity (BBEE) rating of your organisation should have a good score to show to your procurement department, therefore demand certification and credentials.