Global Maritime Learning Solutions (GMLS) has achieved significant success in making the FIATA Diploma in Freight Forwarding and the FIATA Higher Diploma in Supply Chain Management (FHDSCM) accessible to South African learners.

Mark Goodger of GMLS explained: “Our organisation is passionately dedicated to creating a sustainable facility specialising in the provision of internationally benchmarked training programmes in the field of Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management. We noted with concern however that, although South Africa was one of the first countries in the world to have its courseware validated for the FIATA Diploma in 1996, only 65 FIATA Diplomas have been awarded to South African learners out of a total of 7,131 diplomas awarded worldwide to date ~ an alarming statistic. More disturbing is that no FIATA Diplomas have been awarded to South African learners since 1999. This leaves a startling gap in recognised achievement of the international FIATA standard. It is also disappointing that, although the FIATA Higher Diploma in Supply Chain Management was introduced in 2008, it is still not available to South African learners. GMLS has now come up with a solution.

“In 2008 SAAFF obtained FIATA revalidation for the FIATA Diploma in Vancouver. This was granted on the basis of material pertaining to two South African National Qualifications in Freight Forwarding and Customs Compliance. In addition, learners were required to acquire the competencies described in four additional FIATA modules contained in the FIATA Diploma minimum criteria. This means that learners who completed the two national qualifications still need to complete an additional four modules in order to qualify for the FIATA Diploma”, added Goodger.

“Until now, unfortunately, none of the four additional NON-TETA modules have been available to South African learners. GMLS now provides these modules.

“The courseware related to the FIATA Diploma is subject to revalidation by FIATA at the FIATA World Congress to be held in Los Angeles from 8 to 12 October 2012 at the latest. The reason why the FIATA Diploma is globally recognised as an international standard is due to the fact the course material has to be submitted every four years for re-validation by industry Training Experts at the FIATA World Congress. A revalidation is part of FIATA’s strict process of quality control.

“GMLS will submit its course material for revalidation to FIATA through SAAFF in 2012 to ensure that our learners continue to receive the most updated course material.

“One of the most significant changes in the freight forwarding industry over the past ten years is the moving away from traditional freight forwarding towards functional integration through Supply Chain Management. FIATA, through its FIATA Higher Diploma in Supply Chain Management, provides employers with the opportunity to equip employees with the competencies required to meet these new challenges.

“GMLS aims to be the first South African Training Provider that will be accredited to train for this prestigious FIATA qualification.

“GMLS has contracted with accredited, international training consultants to provide our team of facilitators, assessors and moderators with the required “Train-the-Trainer” training and competency requirements to deliver both the FIATA Higher Diploma in Supply Chain Management and the additional four FIATA Diploma Modules. This training was held at our Gauteng offices from 4 to 11 November 2011.”

Explaining the further steps required to bring these qualifications to South African learners, Mark Goodger continued: “The national custodian of these qualifications in South Africa is SAAFF and we are cooperating with SAAFF in their initiative by providing them with our courseware and subject matter expertise required for revalidation of the FIATA Diploma, including the additional four modules as well as first time validation of the FIATA Higher Diploma in Supply Chain Management courseware. It is our intention to place SAAFF in a position to present our required courseware to FIATA for validation for both qualifications as early as March next year.

“These developments will place us in a unique position to provide those learners who have acquired the Advanced NQF 3 and 4 Certificates in Freight Forwarding and Customs Compliance with training on the additional modules necessary for them to acquire the FIATA Diploma ~ a true door-to-door educational capacity building solution.