Industry Training Authority

Industry Training Authority

August 06, 2014 13:07 ET

ITA Delivers on Transition Plan to Steer New Approach to Skilled Trades Training in B.C.

New Industry Engagement Strategy Places Industry at the Heart of Trades Training System

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Aug. 6, 2014) - The Industry Training Authority (ITA) has completed the first 90 days of a Transition Plan in direct response to the recently launched B.C.'s Skills for Jobs Blueprint as well as recommendations made in The Industry Training Authority and Trades Training in BC: Recalibrating for High Performance (McDonald Report). In the first 90 days, ITA has delivered on over 20 actions and will continue to deliver on government's expectations as it transforms into a high-performance, customer-focused organization that is timely, responsive, and labour market demand driven.

ITA's Transition Plan includes four key areas:

1. Transform Industry Relations

ITA has introduced a broader industry engagement strategy to ensure alignment of B.C.'s training system with industry demand (see more information below).

2. Launch LNG Action Plan

ITA is working in consultation with industry on an Action Plan for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) trades training that aligns with regional and sectoral demands. The LNG Action Plan will be released in August 2014.

3. Re-Align Training Investment

ITA is working with government to develop and establish a transparent process for making training investment decisions aligned with labour market demand targets.

4. Enhance ITA Capability

Functions carried out by the Industry Training Organizations (ITOs) will be transferred into ITA by October 31, 2014 (with minimal impact on industry). ITA will have 15 Apprenticeship Advisors, including five Aboriginal focused advisors, by December 31, 2014 (see update about additional 6 Apprenticeship Advisor hires). ITA will also ensure that it has the capability needed to deliver on other government expectations.

As part of "Transform Industry Relations", ITA has introduced a broader industry engagement strategy that is key to ensuring a responsive and relevant skills training system in B.C. The approach includes the establishment of nine Sector Advisory Groups (SAG) representing key trade sectors (see list below), as well as the introduction of Industry Relations Managers to oversee broader industry engagement. Program standards maintenance will continue with engagement and input from subject matter experts.

Sector Advisory Groups will provide the essential role of advising government and ITA on industry-specific issues key to skills training in the province. The groups are to be driven by industry, and populated with representation from employers (including small- and medium-sized), contractors, aboriginal, and labour. Participation is voluntary with no funding provided by government or ITA. The LNG Sector is the first Sector Advisory Group to be established and will be overseen by The Premier's Liquefied Natural Gas Working Group. The other eight Sector Advisory Groups are yet to be established (see Terms of Reference and application process www.itabc.ca/industry).

"It is clear that the newly appointed board of the Industry Training Authority has worked aggressively to provide a 90-day action plan and that implementation of the McDonald Report recommendations are well underway. Key initiatives include the transition to Sector Advisory Groups that will validate labour market needs and relevant data and the announcement of the permanent appointment of Gary Herman as the CEO of the ITA," says Minister Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour. "There is still a lot of work to be done, but we have already seen significant progress."

The nine Sector Advisory Groups are for the following sectors key to the B.C. economy:

  • LNG (including Natural Gas). The LNG SAG will be The Premier's Liquefied Natural Gas Working Group.
  • Shipbuilding
  • Construction
  • Mining
  • Forestry
  • Hospitality
  • Transportation
  • Aerospace
  • Manufacturing

In addition to the nine Sector Advisory Groups, ITA will also ensure other sectors have the opportunity to provide input to the system through surveys, events and meetings. Newly appointed Industry Relations Managers and Apprenticeship Advisors will also ensure that industry stays connected to ITA. Details of the broader engagement plan will be rolled out in the coming weeks.

"We look forward to continuing to implement this robust Transition Plan. Working more closely with industry is at the heart of skilled trades training. We'll have increased collaboration and clearer insights into specific industry needs with the Sector Advisory Groups, Industry Relations Managers and broader industry engagement," says Gary Herman, ITA CEO. "We're moving quickly to ensure the voice of industry and labour is more clearly articulated at every stage of planning and delivery. Together, we will be accountable for ensuring the province has the right skills, in the right place, at the right time based on labour market demand."

ITA will continue to provide Transition Plan updates www.itabc.ca/transition.

Twitter hashtags: #SKILLS4BC #findyourfit

Contact Information

  • For interviews, photos, or more information, please contact:
    Jennifer Vallance
    Edelman Vancouver
    604-648-3433 or Cell: 604-710-6382
    jennifer.vallance@edelman.com