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  • Writer's pictureGerhard Visser

Five B-BBEE Hacks for Skills Development

Updated: Feb 22


Succeeding in Skills Development can be a delicate affair. Get it right, and you maximise your points on the B-BBEE Scorecard while simultaneously growing your talent pool. But get it wrong, and it has the same business impact as setting wads of cash on fire.

To get it right time and time again, follow our five simple steps:

Step 1: Strategy

Have you ever thought about aligning your Skills Development with your business strategy? Or is it a case of get the points, no matter what? How disconnected are you from your L&D Strategy? Do you even have an L&D Strategy? Well, you might be wasting money and opportunities.

To turn things around, consider the following:

  • Align with business strategy – One of your primary tasks should be to develop and shape your company’s L&D strategy based on the company’s overall business and talent plans. Your strategy must seek to support professional development and build capabilities across the company, on time, and in a cost-effective manner. You need to take into account your Skills Development targets and investment when planning your B-BBEE Skills Development initiatives.

  • Co-own Skills Development between business units and HR – Enhance your partnerships with business leaders by establishing a governance structure in which leadership from both business units and HR share responsibility for defining, prioritising, designing and securing funds for Skills Development programmes.

  • Assess capability gaps and estimate value – Now that you have identified your business priorities, you must verify that you can deliver on them. Assess the gaps between your current projects and what the business strategy requires you to do. Give yourself a score for each of them to quickly identify major differences.

  • Design learning journeys – Using the B-BBEE Learning Programme Matrix and your gap analysis, now identify learning journeys and programmes. Always try to maximise internal training efforts vs unemployed training. Use the other elements on your B-BBEE Scorecard to create opportunities for skilled unemployed people, and remember that micro-businesses are a great way to reduce poverty.

  • Execute and scale up – An established Skills Development agenda consists of several strategic initiatives that support capability building and are aligned with business goals. It is vitally important that you test your hypothesis before scaling it. Once it has proven successful, or you have identified and made the required changes, scale it to bring maximum business value.

  • Measure the impact on business performance – Set KPIs for your Skills Development initiatives. Yes, the points awarded vs cash investment is important, but what was the engagement rate? How many learners completed? How many ‘new’ leaders have you developed? How many permanent jobs have you created?

When you formulate your Skills Development strategy, think of ways to tip the scale toward more points for less cash.

Step 2: Governance

Now that you have your strategy in place, you need to create a framework for decision-making to ensure that you can efficiently and effectively execute the strategy. Assuming that you have an L&D department but not an accredited academy, you will face increasing pressure to design and deliver efficient, high-quality and fit-for-purpose learning solutions.

Doing this on time and on budget is critical yet challenging. Thus, you need to empower your team to make the best possible vendor sourcing decisions based on an identified learning need.

Structure a decision-making committee consisting of executives, managers, operational staff and identified learners. Share the strategy you have developed, the goals, timelines and decision-making process. If you have already identified potential vendors, allow the committee to review the vendors against your strategy

Step 3: Partner Up

The challenge of selecting the right partner for your Skills Development programme may seem daunting. You cannot afford to waste time on relationships that won’t bear fruit, making your choice of vendor critical for results and sustainability.

There are thousands of vendors, and only the top 1% deserve your business. But although selecting the right vendor can be challenging, you have more power than you may realise. Before committing to any potential long-term relationship, follow these simple guidelines to identify and qualify the best vendor:

Consider these steps when selecting your training partner.

Step 4: Go Live

Your Skills Development programme must be formally launched, and the launch should be properly planned and scoped. Onboarding learners onto your programme will familiarise them with your strategy and what is expected of them.

A strong onboarding plan results in happier learners and clear expectations, creates camaraderie, and boosts commitment and energy. Get it wrong, and you risk incomplete programmes, dropouts, poor results and, ultimately, fewer BEE points.

Follow these simple steps for a successful onboarding programme:

Use these simple steps when launching your skills development programmes.

Step 5: Measure the impact

In your next board or management meeting, you’ll be asked to provide feedback not only on your B-BBEE Scorecard, but also those learning interventions that you’ve been promising will be a success. Since 2003, when the BEE Act was introduced, HR/Finance/Transformation/L&D custodians have consistently faced one demand: demonstrate the added value of BEE investment for learners and the organisation.


Skills Development should feed employment equity with new black talent, and promote existing black employees into higher occupational levels.

Here are some of our favourite KPIs to measure the RoI of your Skills Development programmes:

A few simple to measure KPI's that you can use for your training initiatives.

In summary, B-BBEE Skills Development is seen as an extraordinary expense in most businesses, but if you have the right strategy and the right delivery plan, you’ll see great returns.

Contact eSTUDY today to find out how we can help you!

012 997 0037

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