Literacy and Numeracy Programme

The NZSA has partnered with The Skills Group Foundation to approach workforce development from a whole new angle.

Communication and understanding are critical to effective and safe operation in any environment. Nowhere is this more relevant than in the changing landscape of New Zealand’s security sectors. Our industry is developing in diversity of workforce and in complexity of the tasks required of them and we lack the leadership ability, across our industry, to fully understand and support this workforce to develop and succeed.

Literacy is a key issue across a broad range of industry sectors and has considerable impact on the learning capability for many workers. New Zealand’s security industry covers some 25,000 workers and it is estimated by those working in the industry that probably 20% to 25% of workers are impacted to some degree by literacy and numeracy challenges.

Such challenges can be overcome, with the right support. The key is to create an environment for our workforce where their great attributes and capabilities are encouraged to shine, while recognising and supporting their challenges.

The Security Industry Training and Professional Development Special Interest Group (SIG) has initiated a project to develop skills where it can have the most impact in a growing workforce. We are now working with the The Skills Group Foundation to develop learning modules to support those who have the most contact with security officers, such as supervisors and managers. These modules will be designed to help them to understand their staff and to utilise best practice learning theory and resources to improve communication and understanding within their workforce.

The Skills Group Foundation are currently working with the NZ Defence Force on a similar project for their trainers. We are excited to bring this approach to where it can have the greatest impact – developing the capability of our frontline leadership.

Whilst we have yet to develop the learning modules, they will be focused on providing simple strategies for leadership.

 As an example we can guide our frontline leaders on how they can achieve best outcomes such as:

Checking for understanding
At the end of a briefing or a tool box talk, ask open ended questions

  • So what are you going to do?
  • What would you do if…..
  • How do you think you should…..
  • Show me how you would……

This allows the learner to reflect on the learning and apply it practically to a situation while you are still present. It also enables you to be confident that the communication has been understood.
We look forward to providing further updates on this exciting project.