The effectiveness of leadership programes in promoting skills development.
With the introduction in South Africa of the Skills Development Act (1998) and the Skills Development Levies Act (1999), employer organisations are obliged to set aside a portion of their annual payroll for the internal training and development of their workplace. Since 1998, the Learnership model of workplace training has been promoted in South Africa as a creative vehicle for addressing high unemployment rates and a serious skills shortage. This is achieved through fast tracking the acquisition of skills and increasing a learner’s chance of employment. However because learnerships are a recent innovation, the body of applied knowledge is small. The study was conducted to provide a comprehensive insight to the effectiveness of learneship in promoting skills development. The research study was based on the explorative research method to clearly understand the dilemma and challenges facing learnership learners. A well structured questionnaire was found to be the most suitable method to collect data that was essential to the study. A key finding concerns how learnerships are managed: the effective delivery of a learnership programme and of its outcomes requires the involvement of key stakeholders from the outset. The study reveals that the SETAs are not doing what they are supposed to be doing in terms of ensuring support with regards to the implementation of learnerships. Based on the findings of the study, recommendations are made to assist SETAs and organisations with regards to learnership objectives that may not easily be achieved if they are only identified through SETA structures. The study concludes with the implications for learnership training and maps the way for future research.