The Minister for Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Honourable Minister BE Nzimande, officially opened and unveiled the College of Cape Town for TVET’s first-of-its-kind, state-of-the-art-twenty-first-century centre and historic Triple Modular Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Skills Centre on Friday, 28 July 2023.
The Hybrid Triple Modular BPO Skills Centre is through the Honourable Minister, Dr BE Nzimande’s visionary leadership and commitment to the advancement of sustainable skills development, and the great contribution to the TVET Sector.
The visionary leadership has translated into various outcomes among them the “Decade of Artisans launched in 2014, the development of the two major strategies which are the Skills Strategy and Innovation Strategy to support the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan (ERRP) of the government”. It is against this background that the College of Cape Town had the pleasure to officially open and unveil the BPO Skills Centre.
It is anticipated that the current project will produce a total of at least 4 000 call centre agents per year.
The skills centre will be operated in partnership with the Western Cape Provincial Government in support of the Premier’s growth for jobs plan and the Cape BPO. This partnership’s pillars aim at addressing underlying unemployment which stems from a projected 35.6% in 2023, upskilling the youth, and increasing the number of skilled and competent Contact Centre Agents. It is envisaged that this endeavour will lead to the transformation of the Western Cape and South Africa, as well as positively contribute to the notion of a knowledge-driven economy. We fervently believe that this initiative underscores our attempt to line up with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030 agenda.
Honourable Minister, Dr BE Nzimande together with the College Principal Dr MM Muswaba (FCIS) and Council Chairperson, Dr Alice King unveiled the plaque to officially mark the opening of the centre. The centre will ensure that the college is able to create a demand-driven curriculum, which will not only train people to only graduate but equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge needed to join the BPO Sector as valuable employees. The College’s BPO Skills Centre has a competitive advantage as Cape Town is the perfect hub for this type of business.
All young people trained and/or to be trained in the centre have already secured employment contracts with the Cape BPO affiliated operators and 80% of those who finish the programme will find permanent employment in the BPO sector. The College has an agreement with the BPO Skills Academy, also known as BSA, to place all the trained students into industry and other forms of employment. The College of Cape Town has also signed a contract with BPO Skills Academy, also known as BSA, to place all the students that have been trained into both industry and other forms of employment. The current state of the unemployed is a challenge that requires collaboration and partnerships between the Public and Private Sectors.
The College has aligned itself with the Minister’s vision of “Let every working place be a training place” and is invested in creating more training hubs across the various vocational and skills programmes offered.
“It is anticipated that the current project will produce a total of at least 4 000 call centre agents per year for a period of four (4) years up to a total of 16 000. This is significant training for job creation, particularly for the youth. Another milestone for the College of Cape Town is the bold decision they have taken for the college to embrace modern technologies”, said Minister Nzimande.
He furthermore underlined that the Centre touches on the fundamental reasons for the government’s decision to establish TVET colleges.
The Western Cape is known for its ability to eliminate irritation during business-client calls, and this is due to the quality of BPO Skills training in the province. The Department of Economics Development and Tourism encourages more institutions to replicate this model across the country because it has been proven to work in the Western Cape.
The College Council and Management express appreciation and gratitude to all stakeholders that have positively contributed to the sustainable development of the BPO Skills Centre and for honouring our invitation to attend the official opening and unveiling.