B-BBEE will bring learnerships to the forefront

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Skills development, specifically learnerships will soon become a buzzword in the
workplace if the proposed B-BBEE codes are implemented. Companies who have
ignored the practice of learnerships will have to face this issue squarely if they hope
to maintain their BEE rating in future.


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By Tracey McLennan
If the new B-BBEE codes come into play one of the areas that companies will
need to focus on in order to maintain their score or improve it, is skills development.

The proposed changes to B-BBEE will result in minimum requirements for priority
elements such as: Ownership, Skills Development and Enterprise and Supplier
Development.
In business the element that will bring the biggest "return on investment' will
definitely be skills development, as training improves staff quality, productivity and
efficiency while contributing B-BBEE points.
Companies that run learnerships get an additional R60 000 tax concession for
each learner that completes training.

The fact of the matter is that businesses, not all, but a lot of businesses don’t
run learnerships for their employees, despite the many benefits to organisations.
With so much to gain the question remains, why don’t businesses incorporate training
in their business models?

Some of the most common answers that surface include; "we didn’t know about
learnerships’, "what are learnerships?’, "there must be a catch regarding the tax
concession’, "they are too expensive’ or "we tried but it didn’t work’.
An average learnership qualification could cost from R16000
upwards. This cost would go towards the company’s skills development spend on
the B-
BBEE scorecard. Organisations also get 20% back from skills development grants
which can be added to skills development spend.

Trained staff will be more loyal, productive, effective therefore you will have a
better workforce. A better workforce will lead to greater profits.
There are some organisations that have never considered learnerships, and
others
who reject the idea because they don’t see the benefit. My belief is that if these
new codes do come in companies will have to give some serious thought towards
skills development, in particular learnerships.
For more information visit
www.bconsult.co.za

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