The development of a marine industry-specific training facility in Cape Town clearly underlines DCD MARINE’s commitment to the advancement of artisans in the South African engineering sector. DCD MARINE, a world-class shipyard and service provider to the international oil and gas industry, has partnered with Khula Nathil Empowerment (KNE), who in turn have appointed MCD to train 150 artisans annually.
The R4-million investment by DCD Group for the training facility will address the shortage of critical skills available in South Africa. “DCD MARINE is intent on providing the market with competent and highly qualified artisans. Our partnerships with MCD Training Centre, which provides training solutions aimed specifically at the specialised artisan market, and KNE will enable us to provide a reliable source of skilled artisans in South Africa,” says DCD MARINE General Manager Gerry Klos.
The partnership with KNE, which is an accredited Public Benefit Organisation (PBO), is a clear demonstration of DCD MARINE’s commitment to empowerment. “KNE has a similar philosophy to DCD MARINE, which focuses on deepening the skills pool in the South African engineering sector. This is accomplished by offering comprehensive training and apprenticeships in boiler making, fitting and turning, welding and rigging,” Klos explains.
The DCD MARINE Training Centre of Excellence comprises a welding school, pipe welding area, grinding and gas cutting (burning) assessment and training area, and a classroom area for the theoretical component of the courses. A blasting and coating simulator was also built to recreate the confined spaces onboard vessels and rigs.
“The facilities also include 20 individual welding cubicles, each fully equipped with high-tech equipment. Of these cubicles, 15 are occupied by the learners while the remaining five are utilised for coding purposes,” Klos enthuses.
Close cooperation and discussion between DCD MARINE, KNE and MCD Training Centre, has resulted in a series of training programmes designed around substantially reducing the time period needed to convert trainees into productive workers.
“The programmes are tailored to suit specific work needs, processes and methodologies. They ensure that real skills transfer and capacity building are achieved and that empowerment initiatives are properly channelled,” adds Klos.
All of these competent learners are placed on a labour database within DCD MARINE’s recruitment centre and they are continuously used as contract workers. “In addition, we train and multi-skill unemployed people who are paid for the 40 to 80 hours that they receive training or assessments. This enables each learner to become employable, not only within DCD MARINE, but within the industry in general,” says Klos.
“The benefit to DCD MARINE’s clients is exhibited by employees who are multi-skilled to the highest levels. Since skills are constantly being refreshed and upgraded, all employees working for DCD MARINE are able to easily undertake even the most difficult tasks with zero defect as the end result,” concludes Klos.
Shipbuilding Tribune Staff, September 25, 2012; Image: DCD MARINE