May 24th, 2012
Industry input vital to the success of Targeted Review of QualificationsAndrew Brownlee and his team of industry specialists are about to embark on three months of non-stop listening. Their purpose: to engage as many people as possible in a review process that will ultimately determine the future of the country’s training qualifications for the manufacturing sector. Sounds daunting? This is not the first time Andrew Brownlee, Competenz Industry Leadership Manager for Rail, Maritime, Food & Beverage, General Manufacturing and Baking will be talking to industry stakeholders. He’s already completed a similar programme of consultation for the review of baking qualifications. Both the baking and the manufacturing review are part of the NZQA initiated Targeted Review of Qualifications or TRoQ, which aims to streamline the number of qualifications offered by training providers and to ensure that New Zealand’s qualifications remain relevant to employers and learners alike.
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‘These reviews are a great opportunity to get back to basics,’ explains Andrew Brownlee. ‘We’re making sure the matrices of skills that sit behind each qualification are fit for purpose, that they not only meet industry’s requirements but also the need for increased productivity.’ While the number of qualifications under review varies according to the sector (Manufacturing for example has over 100 qualifications while the Rail sector has only seven qualifications), the process for each remains the same. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bX9-Q0PdUlU&feature=autoplay&list=PL16577F58731C0C9F&playnext=1 ‘It’s a case of reinforcing what’s already there or if necessary, introducing new components,’ says Andrew Brownlee. ‘Obviously things change in industry and for us it’s a way of ensuring the training keeps step with these changes.’ For this reason input from employers is of vital importance to the success of the review process. In the case of the baking sector, over 150 bakery businesses were consulted and, as a result key deficits in existing qualifications were able to be redressed. ‘There was strong demand for a leadership component at a diploma level and that has now been incorporated. It’s of huge benefit to employers to have their say.’ With 15 regional workshops scheduled over the next few months, Andrew Brownlee expects he and his team will consult with 100-150 manufacturers. Those who are unable to attend one of the workshops are encouraged to provide feedback online by clicking on the TRoQ link on the Competenz website. ‘Every voice counts. We’re adamant that we need a broad cross-section of industry feedback. We don’t want to make any assumptions. We need to be sure that we are not basing changes for many on the preferences of a few.’