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Partnerships to develop talents and businesses
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 13 - 04 - 2021

Talents are always admired and competence is a quest as everyone wants to be the best at what they do. In conversations with talented people, many will speak fondly about certain times when someone showed them the ropes to be able to excel at what they are great at today. This could be a family member, friend, a mentor, an employer, a teacher, or a trainer. While the success of these individuals in mastering their craft came after their determination and dedication, the role of other people as enablers is essential in early stages.
It is not that easy to choose a line of work that people can build their competency around even if they decide what is it that they want to do. College education alone is not sufficient to meet the requirement of the market, thus, graduates supplement their education with job related training and internships. With markets dynamics and continuous development in technologies, the need for a structured way of building skills and know-how is growing.
Training businesses can be instrumental in helping people achieve their career aspirations. These training service providers also help companies and organizations develop their human capital to realize their objectives. This could be increasing sales, improving customer service, or technical abilities like wilding and programming. This type of formal training is indispensable and mandatory in most organizations that allocate annual training plans as part of their budget. Furthermore, potential employers expect to see relevant training programs in the candidates' resumes.
In Saudi Arabia there are more than 1000 private training providers that are licensed by the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) who regulate and oversee the training programs. These training centers and institutes are there to offer accredited training programs in various fields for individuals hoping to develop themselves by attending public courses and for organizations who would like to organize in-house training that is customized for their needs. Another important aspect of working with training providers is the ability to support corporate social responsibility initiatives given that sponsored training is a great contribution to society.
For businesses, working with a local training provider is considered an investment in the value chain. These training centers and institutes are mostly Small and Medium Sized enterprises (SMEs) with high level of flexibility to customize their offering to suit the learning and development requirement of the client. Hiring a training provider is the same as hiring a distributor or an IT service provider where businesses outsource certain functions to focus on their core competency and manage costs. Working with a local training provider means that your organization is contributing to the development of local contents and the overall local economy.
In various media reports, training business owners highlighted a number of challenges they face. Chief among these challenges is the unfair competition from unlicensed providers in the local market or from overseas. The problem with working with unlicensed providers is that the customers neglect their responsibility to carry out due diligence and basic procurement practice to save some money. Working with unlicensed providers is like buying counterfeited goods from illegitimate suppliers. This means the training you provide to your employees is not accredited and doesn't conform to the quality standards followed by licensed providers.
Companies who would like to acquire the services of training providers to deliver programs to their employees, management or suppliers can easily find the right local training partner in a number of ways. For example, you can put out the required training programs to tender in which is a platform managed by Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) that links buyers and thousands of authorized suppliers (SMEs) around the kingdom. You can also browse licensed training providers from the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) website and their mobile application "Tadreebook". In addition, consider including training service providers as part of your supplier qualification program so they can understand and conform to your expectations and requirements.
Working with local training service providers is an investment that will provide many benefits to the ecosystem and the value chain. The return on this investment will be seen in the rise of competitiveness of local training businesses to lead the way in developing talents that support the growth and effectiveness of Saudi businesses and organizations. This will also contribute to direct employment in training businesses as well as indirect employment such as part time expert trainers and most importantly, will raise the chances for trainees to find better employment opportunities.
Furthermore, doing business with local training providers will encourage further investments in the establishment of training centers in several cities to meet the needs for specialized training and will attract international trainees attending these courses as a form of business tourism. Moreover, training providers with quality offerings can compete internationally to provide programs in other countries directly or via licensing agreement, thus, enhancing the Kingdom's exports of services and contribute to the realization of the goals of Saudi Vision 2030 which aims at diversifying the national economy.
— The author can be reached via email: [email protected] and Twitter account @otaibi3w.

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