INSETA sets out strategy to prioritise skills development needs

01 February 2013 Sandra Dunn, INSETA

During 2013, INSETA will take on development of skills by creating various strategies to confront the lack of skills and training in the country.

According to CEO of INSETA, Sandra Dunn, the lack of skills and training creates barriers of entry for many of the jobs that already do exist.

Dunn says that while revenue is being generated in the country, there remains an unequal distribution of wealth and jobs, which needs to be addressed.

New regulations halt job opportunities

"Transformation in South Africa still has a bit of a way to go, and therefore SETA has a bigger role to play in developing the country than ever,” Dunn says. "The insurance sector has a wealth of job opportunities, however, because of the new regulations, entry requirements into the sector have been raised substantially.
This is because such training and skills development has never been more necessary in obtaining a position. Even in sectors without such regulations, where employment opportunities are available, the unemployed, potential workforce is not aware of the prospects available, or would not be able to fill the positions due to their lack of both experience and qualifications,” Dunn says.

Developed sector skills plan

To overcome this challenge, INSETA has developed a sector skills plan within the framework of the national skills development strategy: INSETA collects sector information, researches sector labour market trends, and analyses national and provincial growth and development strategies, in order to prioritise where training will be most effective.
Potential employment

From there, INSETA works with many different companies within the industry to offer a variety of learnerships and internships. These offer a chance to gain experience, skills, and potentially employment that is so desperately needed.
Dunn says, however, that in order for training like this to continue to be successful, all levels of industry, from the unemployed worker through to corporations, SETAs and government, must work together.

Partnerships the way to go

"We must recognise that the ingredients for success require a common purpose, which must be foremost in our minds as we provide support mechanisms to create opportunity.”

Forming effective partnerships are the best way to move forward Dunn maintains. INSETA has set an example of the kind of partnerships that can be built, with the organisation’s National Skills Development Broker Network, which saw INSETA partnering with brokers and bodies such as the Financial Planning Institute.
Reaching small and micro brokers

Launched in April 2012, the network’s purpose is to enable skills development for small and micro independent brokers, helping them to grow jobs through more successful brokerages. It came about in response to the fact that INSETA’s research indicated many support programmes had either not reached small and micro brokers, and/or they have not been geared towards meeting the needs of small and micro brokers.
A symbolic relationship

Through methods such as these, the SETAs can help the government and private sector perform their own roles as best they can. "It is important to realise the extent to which government and private enterprise are in fact parties in a symbiotic relationship. The country needs effective performance in all sectors, so that businesses can compete on both a local and increasingly international stage, make returns to shareholders and investors, provide excellent service, and create more jobs,” says Dunn.

Education is Key

Dunn adds that besides creating more jobs, the country needs to use the existing corporate infrastructure to make more employment options available to a wider demographic; a goal that education can play a key role in. "In order for progressive development in South Africa, we must ensure that the unemployed are capable of filling the roles that currently exist, are aware of the job possibilities available, and are capable of filling new roles as they are created.

Stop complaining

"The short supply of skilled staff is a serious obstacle to the competitiveness of the industry and creation of employment in South Africa. "We all need to take responsibility, rather than just complaining about the situation.”

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