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Learnerships for Unemployed are available throughout the year

Find A SETA Learnership

If you’re unemployed, keep looking for learnerships throughout the year.

There are many private training providers who work with employers to create opportunities for the unemployed. Contact organisations that offer learnerships and write them a professional looking request for information.

Must I have a job to be on a Learnership? Am I protected by legislation (laws) while on a Learnership? What is a SETA? When is the best time to apply or look for a learnership? Do companies always get them started at the beginning of the year?  Will I get a job if I am on a Learnership? 

Below are common questions answered as simply as possible.

Must I have a job to be on a Learnership?

A Learnership is a vocational program linked to a specific qualification. It combines practical workplace experience with training. This means that you are both a worker and a learner whilst completing your Learnership. You will be required to sign a contract with an employer and a training provider committing yourself to the program. You are considered an employee at the company for the duration of your learnership.

You don’t have to have a job in order to apply to be on a Learnership, but you must be willing to be employed whilst on the Learnership. A Learnership is not an academic qualification and as an occupational qualification, you are required to be assessed in the workplace in order to prove job competencies.

Am I protected by legislation (laws) while I’m on a Learnership?

As you are considered an employee at the company for the duration of your Learnership, you are protected by the same labour legislation that protects other employees. If you are unhappy with the way your Learnership is being run, you can lodge a dispute with the Department of Labour and the SETA funding your Learnership. There are new laws specifically written for learnerships that cover Sunday workstipend rules and legal work hours

Are Learnerships for Employed or Unemployed People?

If you are unemployed, you could be selected for a Learnership that the SETA refers to as an 18.2. program. An 18.1 Learnership is one directed at employed candidates who need to upgrade their skills and knowledge in order to progress within a company.

This article focusses on 18.2 programs which are for the unemployed.

What is a SETA?

SETA stands for Sectoral Education and Training Authority. SETA’s are funded by business paying a Skills Development Levy to SARS. During the year, SETA’s advertise to the levy paying members, inviting them to submit applications to receive funding for training.

Government wants to issue these special training funds to business in the hope that additional jobs can be created and you are trained to fill them. Unfortunately SETA’s are usually unpredictable and we cannot always know for sure how many or when funded opportunities will occur during the year. However these opportunities do arise and they can occur at any point of the year as each SETA tries to create these opportunities at least once during the year because the need is so high.

There are an estimated 4.3-million people who are unemployed, most of whom have little training and few skills. More than half of the Grade 12 learners who leave school every year don’t have sufficient basic skills to get work in any sector of the economy. At any one time there are as many as 7 000 graduates who have university degrees who are also unemployed. All these figures could be higher.

So it is clear that skills development, along with training and education are vital elements for the people in South Africa and for the economy. (http://www.vocational.co.za/)

When is the best time to apply or look for a Learnership? Do companies always get Learnerships started at the beginning of the year?  

Although most companies prefer to start Learnership programs at the beginning of the year – many can’t. Either their funding fails to come through in time, or they couldn’t recruit the right candidates or they just weren’t very prepared. Be aware that this training is still considered new by many companies and that you could be on a Learnership with a company that has no previous experience.

The 18.2 Learnerships receive funding from the SETAs. Some SETAs are organised enough to drive these opportunities as many as 4 times per year. This means that you can be searching for a Learnership four times a year and not only at the end or beginning of the year. Many opportunities arise so it’s important that you keep looking. Companies often turn down the opportunity to run a learnership until they discover the tax rebates and BEE points benefits. This also means that many companies don’t understand the real value that a Learnership offers their business operations and that they end up offering learnerships for the wrong reasons. This can be bad for you as the experience can be very difficult for you. You really want to.

Will I get a job if I am on a Learnership?

A learnership cannot grantuee employment but it can improve your chances of employment. Read ‘Do Learnerships and Apprenticeshiips increase Employment Opportunities‘ to read some of the evidence.

If you are determined to find the opportunity that’s right for your career and your life choices – you are going to have to work at it.

#KeepClimbing! ► ► ► 2min vid: How to Select a Learnership http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JpkVZOGTnQ4

Carefully select which learnerships you want to apply for. Remember that a learnership is linked to a specific qualification. You must identify which qualifications you are interested in and want to apply for. Once you are clear about what you want to do, you can find companies who offer those Learnerships.

Anything you are unclear about? Please post in the comments section below.

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Comments (14)

  1. MONWABISI

    Your comment goes here. hi I’m MONWABISI .I wa schooling at Springfield FET college Durban campus .so now I have this problem the is a delay of my N5 and N6 certificates ,It been so long waiting with no response .why the is a delay .so please tell what shall I do ? I was doing electrical engineering

  2. Nkosinathi Nlosi

    Good day, I have N3 national certificate (acc/admin) currently doing English, maths literacy, isiswati and I looking for ECD Leanership.

  3. Hi i have N6 public management currently doing my leanership as a school admin clerk.Can SATS assist me with a stipend?

  4. Hey I’m from Limpopo Tzaneen in town I have N6 Business management & level 2 in opareting retail & wholesalers . I’m looking for a internship or learnship the can makes me to grow more & increase my knowledge. I’m willing to learn more & be part of managers in reatails stores. Right now I’m working as a field marketer . I just wish if I could get an internship that meet my qualification. Thanks

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