The Chief Executive Officer of HRDC Dr Raphael Dingalo together with his staff went on a familiarization tour of the workplaces to advocate for the development of the Work Skills Training Plans aligned to the industry skills needs as well as utilisation of the Human Resource Development (HRD) Fund. Furthermore, the Workplace visits were meant to give the CEO and his team first-hand information on the challenges Workplaces encounter in training their employees. The workplace visits were undertaken at Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) Lobatse; Flo-Tek Lobatse; Orapa Debswana Mine; and Lucara Botswana.

In his presentation during the appreciation visits, Dr Dingalo encouraged Workplaces to always compile and submit their Work Skills Training Plans to HRDC for approval before undertaking their training. “The Works Skills Training Plans serve as a guideline to your Organisation’s training and skills development strategy that will help to meet your overall objectives and targets” Said Dr Dingalo. He also emphasised that it is critical for the Industry to undertake Workplace learning as it supports and promotes acquisition of relevant skills at workplaces.

Through workplace learning, organisations will be able to align skills and competencies to the National and Sector Human Resource Development Plans. Dr Dingalo also shed light on the need for collaboration between the Industry and the Education and Training Providers (ETPs), as it is eminent to promote demand driven skills development and industry-linked research and innovation.

During discussions, Workplaces cited some of the challenges that prevented them from fully undertaking their Workplace Learning initiatives and utilizing the Fund. They indicated that competing business priorities meant training budgets were constrained. It was highlighted that there was no mechanism in place for accrediting short non-credit bearing courses, especially, the much-needed product related training. They also pointed out that in most instances the quality of accredited local trainers is substandard which forces them to engage trainers from outside the country and ultimately missing out on  reimbursement from the Fund.

It was agreed that, in order to mitigate some of the challenges, HRDC in collaboration with Botswana Qualification Authority, would develop an effective reimbursement system that would accommodate Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) functions at workplaces. Additionally, HRDC would assist workplaces with annual training skills planning that is also consistent with the requirements of the HRD Fund in order to alleviate budgetary constraints.

In conclusion, it was recommended that HRDC should initiate a structured collaboration platform between the Industry and ETPs as a way to encourage partnership between the parties in all aspects including on; policy reviews; curriculum development; student internship or system review. The CEO let it known that he shall continuously visit the workplaces to understand their challenges and he thanked them for very constructive engagements.


News Date: 
Friday, August 23, 2019