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Business and training leaders will gather in Cape Town in April for the one-day National Critical and Scarce Skills Summit. Speakers including Dr Raymond Patel from Mersata, Chieta CEO Kelebogile Dilotsotlhe and the Chief Director of Education Planning, Dr Sigamoney Manicak Naicker. Registration is now open if you would like to attend this important conference.

This June will see the Association of Private Providers of Education, Training and Development (Appetd) hold their fourth annual conference. These very useful event brings the country's leading training providers together to address the current issues facing the sector. This year's theme is, "Achieving excellence through the business of Private Education".

A three-day conference that seeks to harmonise and promote compliance with labour relations laws in the public sector is currently underway. Speaking at the conference, Public Service and Administration Minister Geraldine Fraser Moleketi reiterated President Thabo Mbeki?s statement during the State of Nation Address that "compliance levels within departments have been somewhat mixed'.

Government has stressed that the crucial role of behavioural change by individuals, particularly the youth will put South Africa on course to defeat the scourge of HIV and AIDS. The Cabinet spokesperson expressed the government's appreciation for the role of all the stakeholders who participated in the two-day National Consultative Conference.

Security industry workers have called on the government to introduce a minimum wage in their sector to address shortcomings in their conditions of service. The call was made by members of the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) during a march to the Labour Department regional offices in downtown Johannesburg.

Foster-Melliar, a wholly owned subsidiary of Simeka BSG Limited and leading local provider of ITIL and ITSM in partnership with the ILX Group plc, are making ground-breaking strides in computer-based training (CBT), providing a more convenient way to study for the ITIL Foundation and PRINCE 2 qualification at a time and pace convenient to each student.

African Universities should be on the forefront on research, education and the implementation of mechanisms that would prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS, Education Minister Naledi Pandor. "Historically, our universities have enjoyed a high degree of independence in finding solutions to the challenges we face,' she said.

The UCT Graduate School of Business (GSB) is launching a revolutionary course this April that uses a powerful process adapted from psychology to help executives develop their strategic planning and decision-making capacities. The course, called "Thinking with your Gut', is the brainchild of the business school’s Executive Education unit, and will enable leaders to tap into and use a powerful resource many may have overlooked - intuition.

Workers' rights are set to dominate the meeting of the International Labour Organisation's (ILO) Governing Body in Geneva, Switzerland which ends on March 30. The meeting, started with a series of reports scrutinised by Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana, as the new Chairperson of the ILO governing body, and his team.

Disregard of workplace safety measures continues to prove a trend as Labour Inspectors embark on surprise inspections in the construction sector around the country. This is what the Labour Department inspectorate discovered in four Eastern Cape towns.

Employers in the construction industry have been warned to step up their management of sub-contractors to protect their image. Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana sounded the warning during a blitz inspection at the Berg Water Project in Franschhoek in the Western Cape. He noted that contraventions of occupational health and safety regulations in the sector were largely caused by sub-contractors, who were giving the companies and the country at large a bad image.

When top cricketers from across the world come out to play in the ICC Cricket World Cup opening in the West Indies, they will also be taking a strike against HIV and AIDS. The International Cricket Council (ICC) is teaming up with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Caribbean Broadcast Media Partnership

To address the critical skills that are needed for the tourism industry, a leading training provider in the sector has developed a health and safety awaremess programme for the tourism industry's needs. Don Leffler explains that the programme is intended for all who will interact with foreign visitors.

The internationally-accredited Centre for Coaching at the UCT Graduate School of Business is embarking on one of the largest scale roll-outs of coaching expertise yet seen in the country, with a new coaching course in Durban and additional courses in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Government is putting finishing touches to the country’s National Strategic Plan on HIV prevention and treatment, the Deputy Minister of Health Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge has said. The plan aims to reduce the rate of new HIV infections by 50 percent by 2011 and place 80 percent of HIV positive people on treatment.

The Department of Labour has stopped a cleaning operation at a business complex in Durban, as workers were not adequately protected from asbestos at the site. Spokesperson for the department Zolisa Sigabi said three workers of a private company were removing debris from an asbestos roof without the use of the necessary protective equipment.

An HIV prevention programme undertaken by the Medical Research Council (MRC) was found to have empowered women in the Eastern Cape by encouraging dialogue on sex and health issues. Participants, particularly women, found that after they participated in the MRC’s educational programme, they felt more empowered to discuss and negotiate issues such as condom use with their partners.

The Department of Labour will revisit a number of farms in the Northern Cape to inspect workplace conditions there after being unable to do so in the time set aside last week. The department’s inspectors could not inspect 17 farms in Carnavon, Fraserburg and Van Wykvlei during its week-long inspection campaign as despite having made prior arrangements to visit them, they found gates locked or no-one on the properties when they arrived for the inspections.

One of the many challenges of the modern business world is managing employees over different workplaces, sometimes in different cities or countries. Modern IT is supposed to help, but sometimes its more trouble than its worth. On-Site Training's Richard Rayne reviews the latest generation of Microsoft products to see how they can assist the HR department.

English is the main language of communication in South Africa as it is the language that most people from different groups are likely to understand. But for those working in the tourism sector it is particularly important to ensure that foreign visitors can also understand the particular brand of English that we speak. It is a critical skills for the tourism sector.

South African youth last week adopted a national Youth Information Society and Development (ISAD) programme to promote youth involvement in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Spokesperson for the National Youth Commission Monde Mkalipi said the adoption of programme would lead to the rollout of youth development initiatives on ICTs as part of the national plan on ISAD.

The Home Affairs office in Itsoseng near Mafikeng in the North West province was shut down after Department of Labour inspectors issued a prohibition notice pointing to serious contraventions of the occupational health and safety regulations. Some officials working in the Home Affairs offices in Itsoseng alerted the Department of Labour inspectors about the appalling conditions they were working under.

"Over the years I have worked with many people who have completed numerous courses in shipping, yet found them incapable of performing their functions with any kind of real ability. They may once have known the facts, but they don't know how to apply their knowledge to their task." Gerber Shipping Academy's Gwen Gerber explains her vision for 'wisdom driven' training.

South Africa and Namibia will embark in a joint-venture to improve the workplace conditions for workers. Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana said the two countries would ensure that labour relations in both countries were harmonised for the purposes of addressing the violation of worker rights by multi-nationals.

Foster-Melliar is offering clients an assessment service to determine their readiness for ISO/IEC 20000 certification. This offering also includes the development of a roadmap to assist organisations with the initial planning for achieving certification.
Certification gives objective proof of an organisation's commitment to and quality of IT Service Management.


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