People management software specialist Accsys Inc. has been awarded institutional accreditation from the Education and Training Quality Assurance committee of the Service SETA, thereby confirming that it has the capacity to deliver quality education and training in line with criteria specified by the South African Qualification Authority (SAQA).
MD, Teryl Schroenn, says earning the accreditation was no mean feat, and involved a considerable amount of work from all the staff. "We had to prove competence in all the areas in which we provide training, showing how we manage training courses, provide materials, train trainers and control quality," she adds.
Accsys also had to provide extensive documentation on its management systems, staff, learner and assessment policies, quality management tools and review mechanisms, all of which had to be defined and drawn up according to stringent SETA specifications.
"During this process SETA helped us identify certain items in our training techniques that needed refinement," says Schroenn. "This will assist us to further improve the quality of training that we provide."
The accreditation is valid until 31 March 2005, after which Accsys will be reassessed for another five years. "With this accreditation we can now begin the process of implementing standardized high-quality training across all our branches," says Schroenn.
"Many companies are unaware that the provision of SAQA-approved training to their employees qualifies them for a skills development levy rebate of as much as 85 percent," she adds. "Companies contribute 1 percent of their turnover as a skills development levy. The money is paid to the South African Revenue Service (SARS), which, in turn, allocates it to one of the 25 SETAs, based on the company's business activity."
Before claiming rebates, organizations must ensure that they belong to the correct SETA and obtain a levy number from SARS. Other requirements include a training plan, an employee equity plan and the use of accredited training providers when providing training.
"Companies must also appoint a skills development facilitator (SDF), which entitles them to a 15 percent rebate of their skills levy contribution," Schroenn continues. "The SDF is responsible for submitting a workplace skills plan (WSP) to the relevant SETA, which entitles the company to a further 45 percent rebate. The WSP details the company's skills development objectives for the year under review."
Organizations that also submit an annual training plan outlining their skills development achievements for the year qualify for a 15 percent rebate. An additional 10 percent rebate is available in the form of a discretionary grant to organizations that assist with initiatives to increase employee opportunities through the provision of learnerships, development of PDIs, programs for retrenched workers and unemployment programs.