Employers give pass mark, survey finds

A survey undertaken by the Samoa Qualifications Authority (S.Q.A.) to determine employer satisfaction with the performance of graduates from formal Post School Education and Training (P.S.E.T.) providers has ended with positive results.

From the survey findings; employers gave an overall 98 percent satisfaction rate on the graduates knowledge and understanding, qualities, generic and technical skills applied in the workplace. 

The assessments also showed high ratings by employers on the importance for graduates to obtain such skills for the benefit of the workplace. 

According to a press release from S.Q.A., 91 percent of the responses indicated graduates qualifications are directly linked to the job requirement. 

But there is always room for improvement.

For that to happen, it was strongly suggested by employers for P.S.E.T. providers to arrange relevant and sufficient work experience and practical exercises for students to fully prepare them for employment when they graduate. 

Other key factors include employers and providers continued collaborations which pave pathways to internship and work attachment programs for graduates.  

The results from the survey was launched last month at the T.A.T.T.E. Convention Centre. 

The survey complements the findings of the National Tracer Study of 2012 – 2014 graduates from formal P.S.E.T. Providers particularly on the graduates identified as employed before and upon completion of their formal qualification.   

Objectives of the survey were to determine employer levels of satisfaction and views on the importance of knowledge and understanding, qualities, generic skills and technical skills generally expected of graduates and used in the workplace. Employer input was also gleaned on how to improve formal P.S.E.T. provider programmes for graduates to better meet the workplace needs. 

Of the 475 confirmed employers, 95 percent responded to the survey. 

These included employers from government agencies, regional and international organisations, private businesses, church organisations and other non-government organisations. 

From 16 Post School Education and Training (P.S.E.T.) providers, including the Apprenticeship Scheme, a total of 1799 graduates were targeted as to where they were employed.  

However, only 67 percent (1202 graduates) were located in the workplace. Employers of these graduates were approached to be interviewed for the survey. 

“S.Q.A. would like to acknowledge all the employers who were covered in the survey. Their participation and valuable contributions are key to strengthening links between the education providers and workplaces and enabling relevant and quality assured education and training at the post school level.”

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