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Scaling up: sacks and skills – part 2

World Cement,

Read part 1 here.

The importance of staff education

Staff training and education is of great importance to the Dangote Group. The operation of high-tech equipment requires a high level of skills, and technically trained operators are not readily available on the Nigerian labour market. Starlinger, together with other equipment suppliers such as Haver & Boecker, supports Dangote by providing technical training to the operators of the bag production machinery. The new training scheme Starlinger has developed is based on hands-on learning that includes theoretical information such as calculating production specifications for tape production and weaving, as well as practical knowhow for service and maintenance work or machine repairs. The new training scheme, which will be implemented by 2015, will see Dangote staff visit Starlinger’s production and training facilities in Austria, as well as onsite training by Starlinger technicians at the production locations in Nigeria.

The Dangote Academy – bridging the skills gap

The Dangote Academy has been set up to provide talent to all Dangote Group companies and to help bridge the skills gap needed for industrial take off in the country. It provides students with the opportunity to learn the practical and relevant skills needed in the various industries that the Dangote Group is actively involved with. The graduates are usually placed in the companies of the Dangote Group.

Currently, three major programmes are offered. The Graduate Engineer Trainee Programme targets new graduate engineers in the fields of mechanical, electrical, electronics and chemical engineering and prepares them for positions in the supervisory and middle management levels. The Diploma Engineer Vocational Training Programme is for diploma engineers in the aforementioned fields. These graduates are employed as senior technicians and supervisors. Finally, the Junior Technicians Vocational Training Programme educates graduates from secondary school and trains them in technical skills such as welding, plumbing, electrics, etc.

At present, 65 graduate engineers and 150 junior technicians are being trained in the Dangote Academy, and around 100 graduate engineers have completed their training and have started to work in Dangote’s cement plants in Nigeria. In the last 3 years a total of 450 engineers and technicians have been trained and placed in the Group. The Dangote Academy plans to expand its capabilities and size by further improving the training quality to support the Dangote Group in all its present businesses activities and future growth plans.

Written by Sigrid Eder, Starlinger & Co. GmbH, Austria. This is an abridged version of the full article, which appeared in the May 2015 issue of World Cement. Subscribers can read the full article by logging in. They can also read the magazine on smart phones and tablets by downloading World Cement’s app.

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