27 Feb

The Importance and Benefits of Learnerships for Employers


What is a Learnership?

In a structured learnership the programme combines theory with practical skills in a work environment. The learner also learns life skills e.g. communication and teamwork and receives a qualification registered on the National Qualifications Framework. A contract is drawn up by the employer, the learner and an accredited skills development training provider for the duration of the programme to protect all the parties.

What is the difference between a learnership and a qualification?

It is not necessary to enter into a learnership to obtain a qualification, where as a learnership can lead to a qualification.

What are the benefits of learnerships to employers?

  • Because learnerships involve on the job training, the productivity of the company is still on going.
  • The government offers tax incentives to companies for participating in learnerships. SETAs offer cash grants for learnerships.
  • Companies earn points on the BEE scorecard for learnership training.
  • Because learnerships are practical, it is only registered if relating to a skills need in the economic sector.
  • Learnerships open doors to further learning and because it is registered on the NQF, it is also nationally recognised.
  • Learnerships create skilled employees who strive to add value to the business.

What are the benefits of learnerships for learners?

  • The learner can still earn an income while enhancing their skills in their immediate working environment. This will ultimately enhance their career prospects.
  • Learnerships provide an opportunity for further learning and obtaining a recognised qualification that can be portable from one company to another.
  • A learner’s personal development and self esteem improve when they obtain a good qualification.

Are there any drawbacks to implementing learnerships?

With proper planning the benefits of a learnership to both the employer and the employee can far outweigh the drawbacks. Here  it is vital for the employer to use a Training Provider that have skilled coaches to assist learners in applying the learnt theory into the workplace. The Training Provider will at the same time also take care of the paperwork involved while the employer should concentrate on their business.

(SARS) Tax Incentives (Legislated in section 12H of the Income Tax Act,58 of 1962, amended in January 2010)

These are deductions on your taxable income that can be claimed for each employed candidate in a learnership: Once at the start (R30 000) and then again at the completion (R30 000) of the learnership. The amount is R50 000 for learners with disabilities.

It works on the principle that for each year a learner is registered, the employer claims R30 000 for the learnership. The allowance is based on a 12 month period, and full periods of a month. The learnership can be carried over to another employer (if linked to the trade) while the employee is in training. The new employer can claim for the rest of the year and also the full completion allowance.

(SETAs) Learnership Grants

The grants range from R4 000 – R40 000 per learner. The grants are offered on a first come, first serve basis and are subject to availability. The application should also clearly state that the learnership would address a needed skill in the sector.


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