SETAs drive quality ABET. Also referred to as Sector Education and Training Authorities, SETAs exist to improve the skills of workers and unemployed South Africans. The various SETAs also help to develop learning programmes and ensure that they are aligned with government’s National Skills Development Plans. This includes the need to equip South Africans with basic English literacy and numeracy skills.
Bear in mind the country’s high illiteracy rate. Worryingly, many South Africans who do not have basic English literacy and numeracy skills are of working age. This impedes the ability of local industry to compete effectively, while also contributing to rising inequality. Many South Africans are stuck in menial jobs without the opportunity to rise up the ranks. This is so that they are able to accept more responsibility and earn more to improve their circumstances. Meanwhile, many unemployed South Africans do not have English literacy and numeracy skills. This means that they do not stand a real chance of securing employment in a modern economy.
There are 23 SETAs, one for each sector of the economy. Members of the SETAs include representatives of employers, trade unions, professional industry bodies and government. Where relevant, representatives of bargaining councils are also members of these SETAs. This means that the SETAs are very well represented by all industry stakeholders. They are, therefore, closely aligned with the skills needs of their industries. Triple E Training’s ABET meets the requirements of the various SETAs. Refer to SETAs of South Africa (nationalgovernment.co.za) for a complete list of the SETAs.
SETAs of particular relevance
SETAs of particular relevance to Triple E Training’s clients include merSETA, CETA, TETA, MQA and AgriSETA. This is considering the reliance of these industries on low skilled employees. Many of these workers do not have basic English literacy and numeracy skills. Companies operating in these sectors, therefore, have a responsibility to help develop the basic English literacy and numeracy skills of these employees. This is so that they are able to play a more meaningful role in the local economy, as well as grow and develop as individuals. In doing so, companies are helping to transform their industries.
An investment in quality ABET, therefore, makes a large contribution to companies’ broad-based black economic empowerment scorecards. This is over-and-above the role that quality ABET plays in improving productivity, efficiency and accuracy of workers. English literacy and numeracy are also the absolute basic skills that your employees need to perform at their peak. Therefore, companies are incentivised to constantly invest in ABET. However, enterprising and responsible corporate citizens will focus on doing what is correct. This is opposed to only training to comply with B-BBEE. They know that real transformation starts with skills development.
SETA for construction
The SETA for construction is the CETA. This SETA is also referred to as the Construction Education and Training Authority. https://www.ceta.org.za/ provides more information on this SETA and its skills development plans for the construction industry. Triple E Training’s ABET continues to equip construction workers with basic English literacy and numeracy skills. They need these skills to perform quality workmanship. Moreover, employees need English literacy and numeracy skills to study further and attain CETA-accredited qualifications in construction.
The vast majority of individuals from poor communities who are employed to work on projects are not functionally literate. ABET, therefore, remains extremely important in this industry. This is especially if it wants to improve its competitiveness. Low productivity, efficiency and accuracy levels of South African construction workers have long held the industry back. There is also a strong correlation between English literacy and numeracy and health and safety practices on worksites.
SETA for manufacturing and engineering
merSETA is the SETA for the manufacturing and engineering industries. It is also referred to as the Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority. The merSETA Sector Skills Plan provides information on this SETA’s skills development strategy until 2025. As you can see, ABET remains a very important focus for this SETA. This is considering the need to equip the many low skilled employees in these industries with basic English literacy and numeracy skills. Manufacturing has been identified as a key economic sector by government.
It has the potential to create many more jobs for South Africans. However, it is also being held back by a lack of skills. There is currently an over-supply of low skilled employees who do not have English literacy and numeracy skills in these industries. It is, therefore, imperative that companies operating in the manufacturing and engineering industries continue to invest in quality ABET. This is to develop a robust pipeline of proficient workers that can take the industry forward. The industry also needs skilled workers to undergo a Fourth Industrial Revolution. This is in the same way that its counterparts in many developed countries of the world have. They are, thus, more competitive at a global level.
SETA for transport logistics
The SETA for transport logistics is TETA. TETA stands for the Transport Education and Training Authority. For more information on TETA, refer to https://www.teta.org.za/. ABET is also an important means of solving the significant skills shortage in the South African transport logistics industry. This skills challenge is hampering the performance of the industry, although it is ranked very highly in relation to its international counterparts. If the industry wants to maintain or improve on this performance, it will have to continue to invest in skills development. This includes preparing operational workers to climb the ranks to help fill tactical positions in companies.
Skills development starts with ABET. This is by equipping employees with the English literacy and numeracy skills that they need to continue learning. In fact, the ultimate objective of quality ABET is to prepare employees for a journey of lifelong learning. This is so that they can continue growing and developing as professionals and individuals. Employees who have completed our adult English literacy and numeracy training have gained a newfound respect and passion for learning.
SETA for mining
The SETA for mining is the MQA or Mining Qualifications Authority. For more information on this SETA, refer to https://mqa.org.za/. ABET in South Africa has its roots in the mining industry. Long before democracy, there was a strong movement to teach English literacy and numeracy skills to the many migrant workers in the gold mining industry. Fast track many years after democracy, ABET is just as relevant today in the mining industry as it was before. In fact, the mining industry remains a leader in the field of adult English literacy and numeracy training. Triple E Training continues to help many mines and quarries raise the English literacy and numeracy skills of their employees.
This is at time when the industry is increasingly adopting sophisticated technology to improve productivity, efficiency and safety. We also equip members of mining communities with English literacy and numeracy skills. This is as part of the skills development focus of mines’ social labour plans. In order to be granted a mining license, mines have to commit to ensuring that their operations benefit affected communities. These are those communities located within their operational footprints or from where they source their labour. ABET is a significant component of the skills development component of these social labour plans. This is considering the high illiteracy levels in these areas.
SETA for agriculture
The SETA for agriculture is the AgriSETA. For more information on this SETA, refer to https://www.agriseta.co.za/. Many people with very low literacy and numeracy skills rely on this industry for their livelihoods. However, these jobs are increasingly at risk as the industry continues to mechanise general tasks to increase productivity and efficiency. It has never been more important to ensure that individuals who are working in this industry are equipped with important basic skills. They need English literacy and numeracy skills to work with this new technology or to find jobs in other industries. More jobs are at stake as the industry tries to strike a balance between the needs of workers and keeping farms financially viable. If this situation is not carefully managed, it will only compound already high levels of unemployment. Increasing ABET in this industry is a sound starting point.
Learn more about Triple E Training and our ABET solutions that are equipping employees with basic English literacy and numeracy skills.