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Learnerships: The Good, The Bad, and The Budget. The BEE Skills development scorecard requires a company to spend a certain percentage of its annual payroll on training initiatives in order to score the subminimum points. Learnerships have the potential to add value to your business whilst addressing the problem of skills shortages in our country, while simultaneously scoring points on your scorecard. As per SAQA’s definition, a learnership is a work based learning programme that leads to an NQF registered qualification. The Good Learnerships have the potential to be relevant to business needs and thereby also improving skills and work performance. By implementing learnerships for unemployed youth, corporates are aiding in creating a suitably trained recruitment pool of potential employees which subsequently can assist in achieving a company’s Employment Equity targets. With our country’s dreadful unemployment rate learnerships is an investment in our youth’s future. The Bad With the high unemployment and poverty rate, the potential of creating a space where “professional learners” go from one unrelated learnership to the next, just grateful for work and a stipend, exists. Therefore, companies need to have adequate capacity, resources and/ or a proper learner support structure in place, consisting of mentors and coaches, that can assist learners with the practical application of their theory and skills. Added to this is the highly administrative intensive responsibility of ensuring that the learnerships are correctly and timeously registered with the SETA. The Budget With employee costs usually a corporates’ biggest expense, the thought of having to spend a percentage of annual payroll is enough for companies to forgo the moral obligation of job creation and “upskilling”. Unlike other training initiatives learnerships carry tax incentives and grants to make them more financially attractive. Companies may claim rewarding rebates and incentives from SARS for every learnership registered, while SETA’s offer discretionary grants to all employers wishing to implement learnerships. Transcend aims to lessen the burden on companies by assisting them with the following:

  • Recruitment of learners (aligned to your EE and BEE targets);
  • Placement of learners;
  • Mentoring & coaching of both learners and mentors/ coaches;
  • Implementing structured learning plans;
  • Facilitation of induction course for all learners;
  • Registration of learnerships with applicable SETA;
  • Monitor & evaluate progress of learnerships
  • Facilitation of all administration in respect of the implementation and verification of the learnerships.
  • Guidance and advise regarding tax rebates, employee tax incentives and SETA grants.

This article was written by Maryke du Plessis. Should you require more information on Employment Equity and affirmative action measures as well as other service offerings, please do not hesitate to contact us.