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Advanced Training Course on Productivity Practitioners
28 April – 16 May 2008, South Africa

Contributed by Deputy Director of Industries Engineering Eng. Martin M. Nzomo, Productivity Centre of Kenya

001Nzomo delivering the vote of thanks at the closing session

The Advanced Training Course for Productivity Practitioners (ACPP) took place in Johannesburg, South Africa, 28 April−16 May 2008. The course was organized by the APO in collaboration with the Pan African Productivity Association (PAPA) and Productivity SA and funded by the Government of Japan. The 28 participants represented the national productivity organization (NPOs) of six African countries that are members of PAPA: the Botswana National Productivity Center, Productivity Centre of Kenya, National Productivity and Competitiveness Council of Mauritius, National Productivity Centre of Nigeria, Productivity SA of South Africa, and Zambia National Productivity Centre. Fifteen trainees, the author included, were graduates of the Basic Training Course for Productivity Practitioners (BCPP) held at the same venue in July 2007.

001A participant presenting the in-plant training report

The first two weeks were devoted to acquainting participants with advanced knowledge relating to the concepts, tools, and methodologies of productivity and quality, while the final week focused on an in-plant training session. Through this special session, all participants were exposed to the entire process of plant diagnosis, productivity report preparation, and presentation to the client. Participants, with the guidance of APO resource persons from Asia, conducted a two-day in-plant training exercise at Crabtree Electrical Accessories SA and Masterpack Pty Ltd, 12−13 May, and presented a report detailing productivity improvement recommendations to a panel of senior managers of the respective companies on 15 May. The management teams rated the group work as 95% and made a commitment to address the areas identified for improvement within two years.

The APO has committed itself to supporting Africa’s human resources capacity building in the productivity movement. This is evident from the well-selected course content ably supported by the deployment of expert resource persons with substantial practical experience, Kelvin Chan and Lee Kok Seong from Singapore and Burhanuddin Saidin from Malaysia. APO Program Officer Setsuko Miyakawa attended both the opening and closing sessions of the course, which demonstrated the strong support and commitment of the APO to sharing its productivity know-how and practices with African countries.

003APO experts Chan and Lee attending the closing session 004APO expert Saidin delivering a presentation
005APO Program Officer Miyakawa
speaking on the APO-African partnership
006Group discussion

The ACPP, as its title suggests, delivered cutting-edge training in advanced productivity techniques which strengthened the technical and analytical competency of trainees. Personally, I am now more confident in using the techniques of managing the strategic planning process, business excellence concept, and relevant tools for productivity measurement. On behalf of all participants in the course, I would like to thank the APO, resource speakers, implementing organizations of Productivity SA and PAPA, and all involved in this productivity initiative.