Konica Minolta South Africa upskills and empowers

| 8 May 2014

A driving force that underpins everything done by document imaging and management expert, Konica Minolta South Africa, a Bidvest company, is its responsibility to assisting in the improvement of the lives of individuals and communities within South Africa. As part of this, the company's active Skills Development programme includes a dedicated arm focusing specifically on learnership programmes, particularly aimed at black female learners.

Starting in May 2012, Konica Minolta South Africa has run a year-long technical learnership programmes on IT Technical Support and IT System Support. These courses have been NQF aligned (levels four and five respectively) and MICT (Media Information and Communication Technologies) SETA approved. So far, of the 11 learners that have cumulatively completed these programmes, seven have found permanent employment within the company, its branches and dealerships, whilst others have been taken on by other, similar businesses in the IT industry.

The recently launched, third Technical Learnership programme, also on IT Technical Support, currently has six black female participants.

Laetitia Coetzer, special projects manager at Konica Minolta South Africa explains: "All students on Konica Minolta South Africa's Technical Learnership programme were unemployed prior to commencing the course; but had some previous technical experience, along with a minimum level three National Technical Certificate (NTC)."

In May 2013, the company launched a sales and marketing learnership programme, which is the first of its kind in South Africa, registered with the Services SETA and is NQF level 4 aligned.

"We had seven black female learners on the first sales and marketing course, with four finding positions within Konica Minolta South Africa's branch network. The recruitment process is currently underway to source ten suitable applicants for this year’s learnership programme, due to commence in mid June 2014. All students on this course are unemployed school leavers, who have attained a minimum 50 percent grade in mathematics in their Matric examinations."

As well as imparting its considerable technical, sales and marketing knowledge to those on the learnership programmes, Konica Minolta South Africa also believes it is critical to equip these young women with life and soft-skills. "These include tips on managing job interviews, how to behave in the workplace, conflict resolution, personal finance, as well as computer skills such as Microsoft PowerPoint, Word and Excel. Every year we learn from the previous years' experience and adjust our learnership programmes accordingly," adds Coetzer.

"We are dedicated to helping alleviate unemployment and upskill those who were previously disadvantaged. The students that have come through our programmes are now better prepared for the job market, and we are delighted to have been able to offer some of them permanent positions within our branch and dealer network. At Konica Minolta South Africa, we take a forward looking view in terms of training and grooming for succession planning," she continues.

These cutting edge programmes have resulted in the company's jump from a broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) rating of Level 4 to Level 3. "For Konica Minolta South Africa, these learnership programmes and their B-BBEE contribution are about more than just bragging rights; they are about empowerment and improving the lives of individuals and communities in South Africa," concludes Coetzer.

About Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe


Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe GmbH, based in Langenhagen, Germany, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Inc., Tokyo, Japan. Konica Minolta enables its clients to champion the digital era: with its unique imaging expertise and data processing capabilities, Konica Minolta creates relevant solutions for its customers and solves issues faced by society. As a provider of comprehensive IT services, Konica Minolta delivers consultancy and services to optimise business processes with workflow automation. The company further offers its customers solutions and managed services in the field of IT infrastructure and IT security as well as cloud environments. With regard to its office printing solutions, "IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Print Transformation 2020 Vendor Assessment" stated that Konica Minolta is "recognised globally as a leader in print transformation". As a strong partner for the professional printing market, Konica Minolta offers business consulting, state-of-the-art technology and software and has established itself as the production printing market leader for more than a decade in Europe (InfoSource). Its Business Innovation Centre in London and four R & D laboratories in Europe enable Konica Minolta to bring innovation forward by collaborating with its customers as well as academic, industrial and entrepreneurial partners. For its innovative service approach that complements their devices perfectly, Konica Minolta was awarded the prestigious ‘"Buyers Lab PaceSetter Award for Serviceability and Support 2020/2021" by Keypoint Intelligence. Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe is represented by subsidiaries and distributors in more than 80 countries in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. With approximately 10,000 employees (as of April 2020), Konica Minolta Europe earned net sales of over 2.34 billion in financial year 2019/2020.


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