Construction skills

What is the Developing Skills Through Infrastructure Contracts Standard?

Government and the private sector can develop skills through infrastructure projects. Appropriate infrastructure projects and contracting arrangements can be used to provide learners with excellent opportunities to be mentored by highly experienced professionals and artisans within the building and construction industry. Work experience of this nature is highly valued by future employers and is a requirement of built environment professional registrations

The Standard

One way of developing skills on infrastructure projects is to use the Standard for Developing Skills Through Infrastructure Contracts. The Standard has been developed by the Construction Industry Development Board with the express purpose of increasing capacity within the sector. The Standard has been developed to enhance capacity within the construction sector. Increased capacity within the sector it is hoped will improve its efficiency and effectiveness, achieve greater value for money and develop new jobs and enterprises.

How does the Standard work?

The standard works by requiring contractors tendering for a project to set aside a budget for capacity development. This funding is used to pay for accredited training for construction workers and professional working on the project. The standard define the key performance indicator for the project in terms of a contract skills development goal (CSDG) relating to the structured workplace learning of occupational that must must be achieved.

Who developed the Standard?

The Standard was developed by the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) who are an entity of the Department of Public Works. The CIDB’s has a mandate to develop the sector and support skills development

Is the application of the Standard mandatory?

The Standard applies to all government construction projects with a contract or an order issued in terms of a framework agreement that has a duration of 12 months or more, and a contract amount exceeding:

  • R5 million in the case of a professional service or service contract or an order issued in terms of such a contract.
  • R60 million in the case of an engineering and construction works, or design and build contract or an order issued in terms of such a contract.

What types of capacity development is supported by the Standard?

The contract skills development goal (CSDG) set by the Standard can be used to support learners achieving:

  • A part or full occupational qualification registered on the National Qualification Framework.
  • A trade qualification leading to a listed trade (GG No. 35625, 31 August 2012).
  • A national diploma registered on the National Qualification Framework.
  • Registration in a professional category by a statutory council.

How is the Standard applied?

The Standard is applied by setting aside an amount within construction contracts for skills development. It differentiates between engineering and construction works and professional services contracts and sets different goals for these. The methodology for calculating goals is also different as indicated below.

Thus, a large social housing building projects of over R100million should set aside at least 0.375% of the construction contract for skills development.

Please contact Gauge Capability if you would like to assistance in applying the Standard. The Standard can be downloaded here.