WSP and ATR : The What, The How and The Why

The WSP and ATR submission deadline is the 31st of March 2018. Preparing and submitting these documents can be very time-consuming, confusing and stressful. Progression is able to assist you and will ensure the process is painless and effective.

What is a Workplace Skills Plan?

The Workplace Skills Plan (WSP) is intended to document the skills needs in a company and to describe the range of skills development interventions that the company will use to address these needs.

A WSP must be developed and submitted every year in order to comply with current Skills Development legislation. The WSP will normally be compiled by a registered Skills Development Facilitator (SDF) or other qualified person and submitted to the SETA.  

By complying with legislative requirements, a company is granted access to the various SETA grants available for skills training. However, in order to qualify for these grants, organisations must also ensure that their Annual Training Reports (ATR) are also submitted. This report is intended to show your progress against your last WSP.

Why is a WSP important?

A Workplace Skills Plan is meant to outline how an organisation/ employer is going to address the training and development needs within the workplace. It assists employers in identifying and providing relevant training that will address the skills gaps within the organisation. Compiling a WSP ensures that training is not only reactive to needs that emerge but also speaks to the overall organisational strategy, as well as encourages a holistic and sustainable approach to skills development. A well thought-out WSP will ensure that the skills that an organisation lacks are being addressed. This, in turn, will result in decreased training and development costs as development efforts are more focused.

How to develop a WSP

Below are some simple steps you can follow when developing your WSP. Progression is able to assist employers with their WSP & ATR submissions.

1. Identify existing skills within the organisation.

The first step in developing your WSP is to identify the skills that your workforce already has. Conducting a Skills Audit is the most effective way to do this. The main objective in conducting a skills audit is to identify the skills and knowledge that the organisation currently has, as well as those which it lacks.

Purpose of a Skills Audit

To identify the skills and knowledge that the organisation:

–       requires; 

–       currently has

Identify and investigate the current competencies of each employee against pre-defined skill sets required to fulfil a specific role/function.

Benefits of a Skills Audit

Improved skills and knowledge.
Decreased training and development costs as development efforts are more focused.
Improved succession planning for employees’ growth and development.
Increased productivity as people are better matched to their positions.

2. Identify the skills gap within the organisation.

Once you have identified the skills that are present within the workforce, it becomes much easier to carry out the second step - identifying the skills that are missing and need to be developed. What skills are needed to achieve the strategic objectives of the organisation but are not present in the current workforce? These are the skills that need to be developed. Once again, a Skills Audit is a useful tool in identifying these gaps. Understanding where the gaps lie is an important step to any planning process and will pave the way forward for step 3.


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