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EFSA Joins Services SETA Initiative to Promote Accreditation of eCommerce

Services SETA organised a scoping meeting on 25 Oct to decide if a training module for “Entrepreneurial Ecommerce Managers” should be prepared. A number of SETAs already offer courses that contain elements on eCommerce (e.g. the modules on digital marketing, or on retail management). These were developed without input from the eCommerce sector. EFSA had already started looking at accreditation for eCommerce skills, and Prof. Budree of the University of Cape Town is preparing a study identifying those skills. The possibility of shaping a specific training module for eCommerce is therefore welcomed.

It will help adjust any errors or omissions in existing modules and give the sector a template for training. The SETAs have also been allowed to extend their reach from basic level training up to post-graduate level (level 8). This new module would be aimed at senior grades, from university and technical college (TVETs) level to post-grad. A drafting team has been appointed following the meeting, which includes Prof Budree and three other EFSA Board members, plus another academic and two independent members. The aim is to complete the drafting in Autumn of 2023.

The SETAs (Skills Education Training Authorities) in SA were set up to promote training. They are funded by a levy on companies with an annual turnover of over R100m. There are 3 SETAs which could claim eCommerce – The Wholesale and Retail SETA, the Information Technology (MCIT) SETA, and Services SETA which covers areas such as profession services and marketing. No one is forced to follow SETA based training modules, but they are, of course, adopted by the state-owned Universities and TVETs. They also are the basis for accreditation of specific skills. Accreditation is an additional process developed under the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA). EFSA intends to work towards accreditation of skills underpinned by a ‘lifelong learning’ process that would encourage young business people to track their careers through a structure. The key would be to allow young business people to develop a wide range of skills and not be confined.

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