Heading Up SA’s SETAs
Through the National Skills Authority, government established the Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA) to develop and implement skills plans and disburse levies collected from employers and their sector.
Heading some of these SETAs are women who are passionate about education and training.
For Nosipho Mia Makhanya, Board Chairperson of the Banking Sector Education and Training Authority (BANKSETA), education and training is a gateway to success. “It’s imperative that both public and private stakeholders continue to play their part effectively in order to ensure the future of our youth and our country.”
To achieve its skills development goals, BANKSETA has partnered with the banking sector and relevant stakeholders to identify existing gaps that could hinder its objectives. Makhanya says over the years, BANKSETA has implemented educational programmes to bridge the skills gaps through the Letsema Learnership, Small and Medium Enterprises, Masters and Executive Courses and Recognition of Prior Learning Programmes, among others.
Felleng Yende, CEO of Fibre Processing & Manufacturing (FP&M) SETA says she’s passionate about making a difference in people’s lives through education and training, and skills development. “I feel strongly about transforming the lives of employees and unemployed youth and giving them opportunities to escape the shackles of poverty.”
The FP&M SETA is the amalgamation of the Clothing, Textiles, Footwear and Leather, Forest Industries Education and Training Authority and the Media, Advertising, Publishing, Printing and Packaging SETAs.
Since the amalgamation, the SETA has seen four unqualified and clean audits during the past six years, and recorded an overall performance of 100 per cent for SETA funded learners by meeting all 40 of its performance indicators and targets.
Leadership qualifications and challenges
To successfully head any one of these SETAs requires one to be proactive, forward-thinking, innovative, inspirational with the ability to facilitate effective teamwork, says Yende.
Yende has been CEO since 2013 and holds various board positions. She has a Masters in Public Administration, and awaits to be conferred a PhD degree in Public Sector Leadership and 4th Industrial Revolution.
“My business philosophies revolve around innovation and the fourth industrial revolution technology, digitisation and online platforms, and transformational leadership. It’s my view that businesses need to embrace emerging and future digital skills if they want to be globally competitive and economically sustainable.” Makhanya says key to operational success is ethical and moral leadership, and collectively, BANKSETA and its partners in education, training and skills development can bring about paramount developments in the banking sector and in the country.
A chartered accountant and chartered financial analyst, Makhanya has held various positions in the South African and UK banking industry, predominantly in investment banking and corporate finance. She’s in her final year of study towards a Bachelor of Law Degree at the University of the Witwatersrand.
Makhanya says the timeous and effective delivery of SETA programmes from both a qualitative and quantitative perspective, with the requisite geographical reach, recognising the advancements in the fourth and fifth industrial revolution within the banking sector remains a challenge. To this end, she says the BANKSETA board and management have recognised that skills development is key in overcoming implementation challenges.
“I believe leadership should be responsive to the past and current environment. Amid COVID-19, we continue to work in accordance with government guidelines.”
Yende says COVID-19 accelerated innovations in training, pointing out that the switch to remote teaching has been a learning process. “Operationally the need to embrace technology and operate remotely will have severe cost implications on the SETA going forward at a time when its financial resources are constrained,” she says.
“Our business continuity plans are going to be put to the test to address skills delivery.”