Former HEART board calls for improvements in programme delivery
The former board of the Human Employment and Resource Training Agency (HEART Trust/NTA) has used the 2014-2015 annual report of the agency to call for improvements in the programme and training output of the agency.
During the last financial year, the direct training costs related to delivery of programmes increased by 13 per cent, moving from $3.7 million in 2014 to $4.2 million in 2015.
"The need still exists for greater emphasis to be placed on the management of programmes and training output," the audit committee of the board said in the annual report.
The committee, which reviewed a total of eight internal audits relating to programme and training output during the period, noted that improvements have been made, but more needs to be done to address the shortcomings in training and programme delivery.
A total of 21,977 trainees completed certification programmes for the year that was under review.
The agency exceeded its enrolment target, attaining an annual enrolment of 72,750, which represents 118 per cent of the targeted enrolment of 61,804. Actual job placement of 4,838 jobseekers represented 110 per cent of annual target.
Under the leadership of former chairman, Dr Moses Peart, several board-led initiatives were introduced to beef up the delivery of programmes.
"The board guided the development of new tools and processes towards a diagnostic assessment and referral system for training projects and programmes that are supported by HEART Trust/NTA," the report said.
During the period, the board also granted approvals for 24 new community training initiatives with particular focus on unattached/underserved youths and adults, including persons with disabilities.
Additionally, the board guided the restructuring of the statistical accounting and reporting system for the training programmes of the agency in a bid to monitor more accurately whether or not programmes are producing the desired results.
Armed with the data from the statistical accounting and reporting system and the eight internal audits conducted on the agency's programme output, the board, which was in placed for 2014-2015, charged the management team to give priority to improving the programmes and training output of the trust in fulfilling its mandate.
The annual report further highlighted the continued financial strength of the agency. The three per cent contributions made by employers saw an increase of $796.05 million for the period of April 1, 2014 to March 31, 2015.
A total of 14,323 employers made contributions of $8.34 billion to the HEART Trust Fund for the period. There were 1,442 employers making payment for the first time, and 1,253 audited firms making arrears contribution payments totalling $234.82 million.