Graduate, SMME development key focus as company turns 10

20 February 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201913515

Consulting Engineers & Project Management
Education & Training
SMME Development & Support

PROFESSIONAL registration is a key milestone that prepares young graduates for leadership, or even branching out into their own enterprise.

That’s according to Balan Govender, Managing Director of Bosch Ulwazi, who added that the company had successfully ventured into the establishment and development of emerging enterprises into reputable suppliers to the built environment.

“A critical part of Bosch Ulwazi’s operations is to identify, mentor and develop black-owned businesses, to support a client’s supplier and enterprise development goals,” said Govender.

“In partnership with leading organisations, including state owned enterprises, Bosch Ulwazi plays a key role in the development of small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (SMME’s). Our highly-skilled team provides guidance on project and operations management, skills development and the planning and implementation of expansion strategies, in compliance with corporate governance.

Graduate, SMME development key focus as company turns 10
Some of the Bosch Ulwazi team: Back row from left Balan Govender and Tertia Reid Front row from left: Felicity Mostert and Sthembile Nikwe

“To date, we have developed 78 emerging enterprises in South Africa, which are now profitable and sustainable organisations. In fact, a few of our beneficiaries now have annual turnovers close to R50-million. We are proud that every one of our clients has received maximum points in the enterprise and supplier development categories of the BEE scorecard, in line with the Government Gazette Codes of Good Practice.”

Bosch Ulwazi marks its 10th anniversary this year, with a track record in the advancement of engineering skills across South Africa. The company was established in 2009 as a subsidiary of Bosch Holdings, to mentor engineers and project managers to achieve professional registration with regulatory bodies.

Today, it provides a range of technical skills solutions to public and corporate client organisations that employ graduate engineers, technologists and project managers who are candidates for professional registration.

“As we celebrate a decade in business, we look forward to seeing SMMEs increase their number of employees, boost turnover, become ISO compliant and ultimately have access to procurement opportunities within the supply chain of sponsoring companies,” Govender said.

“Another key focus for Bosch Ulwazi is graduate development. Our Engineer-in-Training (EIT) and project management programme provides opportunities for graduate engineers and project managers to enhance their practical engineering and project management competencies, to meet the Engineering Council’s (ECSA’s) and the SACPCMP’s requirements for professional registration, over a period of three years from graduation.”

Since the introduction of the EIT programme in 2010, graduates have worked on Group projects in South Africa, Brazil, India, Barbados, Tanzania, Swaziland, China, Oman and Kenya.

On completion of the curriculum, candidates will have a comprehensive portfolio of evidence that assists in the submission for professional status. To date, 15 graduates have successfully registered as professional technicians, technologists and engineers. Bosch Ulwazi has also assisted 10 senior engineers within the Group, to complete their registrations, as mature applicants, with ECSA for professional status.

Looking ahead, the company plans to expand its services to the Eastern and Western Cape and hopes to establish an ‘incubator’ in KZN to assist emerging enterprises.

Bosch Ulwazi also provides mentoring for business owners at a higher level than that which is provided to SMMEs. The company brought into its fold, mentors with extensive experience in management of organisations and running of large projects within the engineering industry.

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