Lincoln Lubrication SA, a SKF Group company, has developed the first nationally registered qualification for Lubrication Equipment Mechanic Artisans. This new Occupational qualification is now available to any employee with experience in the automated lubrication field. Successful candidates will be certified as Lubrication Equipment Mechanic Artisans and will be awarded the nationally recognized Artisan Certificate by the Quality Council of Trades and Occupation (QCTO).
This landmark achievement is the result of eight years of hard work and dedication by the Technical Working Group, a team of forward-thinking stakeholders, spearheaded by Human Resource Professional, Michael Mogogabe, Skills Development Provider (SDP) & Trade Test Centre (TTC) Training Management provider to Lincoln Lubrication SA. Members of the Technical Working Group include representatives from companies that are involved in the lubrication field as well as training providers who were appointed to develop the trade test tasks and national assessment instruments. “Membership also includes the Community of Experts who was responsible for the development of the Lubrication Equipment Mechanic qualification and curriculum,” explains Mogogabe, adding that the appointment of these members was facilitated by the Department of Higher Education and Training under Artisan Development.
“While the journey in developing this qualification was never an easy one, the sense of achievement following the completion of the trade testing overshadows all challenges encountered throughout the years,” notes Mogogabe who, together with William Van Rooyen and Roy Grobler, are the first candidates to have successfully completed their assessment and have been declared competent by the National Artisan Moderation Body (NAMB).
The development of the qualification as well as the curriculum content commenced in 2012 and was registered with the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) in 2015. The process of developing the trade test tasks and National Assessment Instruments started one year later and was concluded in early 2020.
According to Mogogabe, the entire assessment process as well as the development of all the Assessment Instruments was under the strict guidance and authority of NAMB officials which is an Advanced Qualification Partner for trade qualifications. “We also appreciate the support that was provided by MerSETA who kindly assisted us in getting the lubrication field occupation registered in the Organizing Framework of Occupations (OFO) and recognized as a Trade Qualification by NAMB,” notes Mogogabe.
All big machinery and equipment imported into South Africa by the mining, printing, food & beverage, agriculture, steel, wind turbine, cement and transport sectors are equipped with a standard automated lubrication system. “It is the responsibility of the qualified Lubrication Equipment Mechanic Artisan to repair, maintain, install and commission these lubrication systems so the development of this first-of-its-kind artisan qualification which gives recognition to this essential industry is indeed a milestone,” says Mogogabe.
Another area of pride for Mogogabe and his team is that this portable qualification achieves the objective of lifelong learning as it offers employees involved in the lubrication field the opportunity to study further as well as to articulate into other registered qualifications. Qualified artisans are also in the advantageous position of being able to enter occupations such as Lubrication Analyses and Lubrication Condition Monitoring. They further have the opportunity to enroll in courses provided by the International Council of Machinery Lubrication (ICML) such as Machine Lubricant Analyst and Machinery Lubrication Technician.
The two-day trade test is conducted at Lincoln Lubrication’s 400m² Test Centre which comprises both practical and theoretical areas. The Centre is equipped with all lubrication systems training panels fitted with specialized lubrication tools and equipment, an electrical testing training panel, work benches, drilling and grinding machinery as well as hydraulic, electrical, and pneumatic lubrication equipment and pumps. The curriculum includes the following key content: Hand skills, lubrication theory, and lubrication systems and equipment repair, maintenance, installation and commissioning. Single line, two line, progressive and spray oil/grease lubrication systems as well as oil circulation systems are applied in the course.
”We have capacity to offer pre-assessments and training facilitation for up to twelve candidates at any given time,” says Mogogabe. “Throughout the year we offer ARPL (Artisan Recognition of Prior Learning) pre-assessment and training for people with experience in the lubrication field to have a qualification. We are able to tailor the training session to meet each person’s needs and we welcome all enquiries.” He adds that Lubrication Equipment and Systems specialized training is also offered to candidates who need in-depth specialized knowledge and skills.
During the qualification and curriculum development phase, a global comparability study was conducted with similar qualifications and industry practices that are available internationally. “It was found that South Africa is the only country in the world that currently has this qualification. Notwithstanding advanced practices in various countries, there is no qualification comparable to this one. As the Lubrication Equipment Mechanic Artisan qualification is the first in the world, we are confident that it can be applied and will be relevant anywhere internationally.”
Mogogabe says that this momentous achievement cannot be fully celebrated without acknowledging all those who shared and contributed to the visionary objective of making such a national qualification possible. “I am privileged to acknowledge each and every person who has contributed to this qualification and I extend a sincere thank you for their support, dedication and passion.”