The UK India Business Council offers skill enhancement training with international certification to those aspiring for blue collard jobs. Richard McCallum, managing director, UKIBC, India tells Gauri Rane why they have introduced this programme
1. Tell us about the skill enhancement training programmes offered by UKIBC? Why were these programmes introduced?
UK India Business Council (UKIBC), has collaborated with Lavasa Corporation Limited (LCL) to offer innovative skills training programmes, with certifications from international awarding bodies, on workforce development. UKIBC will be aiding in the development of key programmes, in association with a consortium of UK skills providers to create and deliver pilot projects. The consortium includes Association of Colleges (AoC) India and Manipal City and Guilds (MC&G). The programmes were introduced based on the skills gaps identified by LCL and after discussions with their leadership team led by their president and CEO. The key objective of the programmes is to up-skill and re-skill industry workforce. The module will provide behavioural trainings to improve customer interface for security guards and improve resource management and performance of supervisors who will in turn be able to ensure quality improvement in performance of construction workers.
2. What is the duration of the training module? What kind of training will the module have?
The Security Guard Behavioural trainings will consist of 40 Guided Learning Hours (GLH) and Construction trainings (in Bar-bender and Masonry trades) 60 GLHs each . The training module for Construction qualification is aligned to the National Occupational Standards (NOS) of the relevant Sector Skills Councils (SSCs).
The programmes conducted are: 1. Train the Trainer by Burton and South Derbyshire College, Highbury College and Manipal City and Guilds. 2. Certificate programmes in Construction (Masonry and Bar Bending) and 3. Certificate programmes in Unarmed Security.
3. What is the certification that the learners will get post their training?
As Indian NOS are being followed, the certification will be of national recognition but an equivalence to international standards can be drawn as they are being delivered and offered by organisations of international repute - City & Guilds (C&G) and Association of Colleges (AoC). AoC delivered the master trainings through its college BSDC and C&G through its joint venture partner in India —MC&G.
4. How will this affect the careers of these professionals? Why did you choose to train professionals in this sector only?
The learning outcomes will help to improve the customer interface ability of security guards. Earlier they were good in their domain area but not pro customer when interfacing with tourists and visitors. In construction , the supervisors will be re-skilled in bar-bending and masonry with a focus on health and safety and this will help in managing of construction workers. Lavasa Corporation helped identify the sectors based on skills gaps identified by corporates in the region.
6. At the end of the training, will they be offered/ assisted in getting job opportunities?
This is a re-skilling and up-skilling programme for security guards and construction supervisors at Steiner India to bring workers conscious of global standards in health and safety and help supervisors in time management. The professionals being skilled are already employed so this programme will focus on retention of workforce and provide them a better work ethos.
7. Is there a deficit of personnel in the sector? How many? Can you give a percentage?
Yes there is deficit of skilled resources in the sector - both from domain knowledge as well as health, safety and environment perspective but it is difficult to quantify the exact deficit.
8. What needs to be done to overcome this ?
Industry needs to mandate skills certification and the government needs to mandate insurance of project sites and it is imperative that the contractor has a license to practice. Organisations need to charge higher premium for insuring project sites with no skilled certified workers and/or Health Safety Environment HSE certified workers and supervisors. Premium is less if they are certified and this needs to be done in a progressive manner. Higher percentage of skilled certified workers and supervisors equals to less premium. The government can bring this in as regulation. However, construction sector has multiple layers between a developer and project contractor and hence the willingness at the developer level does not get executed at the project contractor level. Hence, a construction contractor needs to have a license to practice where skills certification should be mandated. So , it can have two points of checks— at contractor level and developer level. The Building and Cess fund (The Building & Other Construction Workers` Welfare Cess Act, 1996 ) can be made available for further facilitating and motivating skills and HSE Certification.