Lessons on Implementation of the SCORE Programme, 15 April 2021
What is SCORE? Sustaining Competitive and Responsible Enterprises (SCORE) is a global ILO programme that focuses on improving productivity and working conditions in Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) to ensure they can compete in global supply chains. Why apply SCORE in SA? Piloting SCORE in the clothing and textile manufacturing industry of South Africa stems from the fact that the sector has faced numerous challenges over the years, including retrenchments and factory closures coupled with low competitiveness levels compared to its international competitors.
Why this webinar? SCORE brought about potentially long-lasting improvements by highlighting the link between productivity and workplace practices using user-centred methods, which represented a win-win for both employees and employers.
The webinar reflected on the lessons learned by trainers, employers and workers from the participating firms and the supporting institutions. It also explored the potential for rolling out SCORE to additional manufacturing sectors and industries.
Live tweet from the UN South Africa during the event:
What did the speakers have to say about productivity challenges and improved workplace cooperation?
What can be done to increase competitiveness and promote decent working conditions? Our top four suggestions would be to focus on gender as a function, decent work conditions, to close the digital gap, and to support youth and, in particular, young women entrepreneurs. SCORE is doing important work on this front.
Bernard Rey, Head of Cooperation, European Union
Productivity intervention should not be at the expense of labour and employment. It should contribute to making the South African economy more competitive with a skilled and productive labour force, with the appropriate skills to compete in the connected global economy.
Sam Morotoba, Deputy Director General: Public Employment Services Department of Employment and Labour
The wider significance of the SCORE approach… in promoting improved labour relations, collaborative workplaces, job retention, and employment is not only in the clothing manufacturing sector but in other sectors as well.
Lindiwe Ndlela, Acting Head: GTAC
The lessons, emanating from the SCORE programme experience, need to be used as a basis of reflection in order to modernise our industry collective bargaining agreements.
Andre Kriel, General Secretary: SACTWU
It has been the first in South Africa for a bargaining council to move on such an innovative developmental approach towards paving a stable and sustainable growth-focused policy.
The majority of the factories are actually SMEs and not large companies. These SMEs also employ more people and SCORE is here to help their productivity.
Watch: The Launch video for the SCORE programme to learn more.
Lessons learned from firms and trainers
What did the SCORE trainers,firm managers and factory workers say about the training process?
The most important thing for us as trainers is to be open-minded and open to learn and adapt without compromising the value and the quality itself. So how do we then positively and practically respond to the culture of the organisation?
Phumeza Nobhongoza, SCORE trainer
It was really exciting to get our staff involved from all different departments. That gave us a really good oversight on the different challenges we’re all dealing with in the same business.
Karlien Spamer, Ciovita
We’re continuously improving in the business as employees. It’s a really, really nice journey.
Zeena Theunissen, Ciovita
We need leaders of SMMEs who can walk the talk, who are committed, and who are passionate because the workforce looks up to the management team.
Charlene Steyn, SCORE trainer
We started the SCORE programme not too sure what to expect, and it’s probably one of the first programmes that involves both the employee side, as well as the management side.
Sifiso Mashele, Masana
Attending SCORE was the best thing I’ve ever done. And it has given me a very high confidence to talk to the employers, to talk to the employees. Everything has improved in my company and it’s thanks to SCORE.
Keke Mokoena, Masana
It was up to us and the enterprises to find ways to practically measure things that we can measure. It was quite exciting to see that even things like employee morale can be measured. So continuous improvement is about the numbers.
Dumisani Mkhwanazi, SCORE trainer
What we’ve found is where you don’t get that finance support, the ability of the project team to deliver, to sustain, and to get the improvements that we obviously aim for in a programme like this, get compromised.
Sean Kirby, Prestige/The Foschini Group
Potential benefits for firms
Certification of the SCORE trainers
Phumeza, Charlene and Dumisani were presented their SCORE trainer certificates. Find out what the Director of ILO Enterprise Department and the Head of SCORE Programme had to say.
The figures that we pull in at the ILO are phenomenal in terms of the impact that COVID has had on the closure of businesses and lost opportunities of employment. Underlying all of those is the business resilience, is productivity, is the ability to train people to be able to pick up where they’ve lost out and to create new opportunities.
Vic van Vuuren, Director Enterprise Department: ILO
There are right now 357 certified SCORE trainers. So when we add three new ones today, it will be up to 400 certified SCORE trainers. As a global family operating in 18 countries, I think that there is quite a bit of opportunity for us to share these kinds of results and also best practices and lessons learned.
Michael Elkin, Head of SCORE Programme
“We’re now beginning to say to South Africa: “We heard you in 2018. And we’re implementing this programme, which would help to enhance economic growth.” This happens just immediately after adoption of the economic reconstruction and recovery plan. And if you look at the plan, there are two key priority areas that relate to industrialisation and localisation. And the second one, it’s relating to macroeconomic interventions and enables us for economic growth.”
The involved stakeholders talked about how SCORE could boost the productivity of firms and workplace cooperation.
We’re excited about the future of SCORE because it fits well into our decision to get out of the race to the bottom. So many garment manufacturing companies across the world decided that they will out-compete other countries and do so by having lower and lower wages. We decided rather to pay decent wages negotiated by trade unions and employers at a centralised level.
Etienne Vlok, SACTWU
We believe that the SCORE programme aligns and talks to the government master plan 2030… to increase the share of local retail sales of locally manufactured products from 44% to 65%.
Ed Besson, Employer Associations Representative
What was the takeout message from these lessons learned?
We’re now positioning South Africa as one of the first pilot countries in the world to test and implement this new productivity ecosystem and to see how we can support all the ongoing efforts… but potentially also other sectors beyond the clothing and textile.