Otis South Africa, a subsidiary of Otis, global manufacturer of lifts and escalators, has re-launched its training academy in line with its skills development programme, designed to create technical and functional expertise in African markets.
Building skills and expertise through the Otis Training Academy is a key element in positioning South Africa as a hub for Otis products on the African continent. The skills shortage in the technical field has left the company struggling to find qualified mechanics that can service and maintain Otis equipment, while meeting its stringent safety standards.
Otis, in partnership with merSeta, has been able to run a very robust learnership/ apprenticeship programme. It currently hosts sixty-eight learners and graduates, and on average, sees fifteen mechanics qualify each year. In 2016 twenty-one learners qualified, all of whom were subsequently employed by Otis.
“With the recent statistics released on the unemployment rate in South Africa, Otis acknowledges that it can contribute to the reduction of unemployment by doubling the intake of learners into the learnership/apprenticeship programme,” says Loueen Jones-Paulsen, HR Director of Otis Africa.
Apart from graduating learners with an NQF Level 4 Mechanic qualification, the training academy will now offer programmes ranging from service and maintenance, installations, quality, environment, health and safety, sales, field engineering and operations, supervision, project management, general management, leadership, and a module on doing business in Africa. The training and development framework will ensure the development of clear career paths, allowing employees to progress through the organisation, bringing about talent development and far greater employee retention. In addition, the training academy will provide training to subcontractors and black entrepreneurs participating in the Otis B-BBEE programme.
The primary purpose of the academy is to create a space where all Otis stakeholders increase the level of skill, competence and expertise while fostering a culture of learning and encouraging operational and service excellence. For Otis to remain committed to and deliver on its promise of uncompromising quality and safety, it is imperative that it has a strong leadership, and highly skilled, customer centric and competent workforce to ensure it retains its global leadership position.
The Training Academy was re-launched by Bora Gulan, President of Otis North, Central Europe and Africa (NCEA) and Daniel Daphne, MD of Otis Africa.