Hundreds of Guyanese businesses are benefitting from a wide range of online training courses being offered by the Centre for Local Business Development (CLBD) as COVID-19 restrictions continue to prevent indoor sessions from being conducted.
Since its establishment in 2017, CLBD has been helping Guyanese businesses to improve their competitiveness and build capacity so that they can be better positioned to benefit from opportunities, not only in oil and gas, but other sectors as well.
Restriction measures in response to COVID-19 have resulted in the indoor sessions that are conducted at CLBD’s South Road, Georgetown office being made available online. In fact, even before the pandemic, the Centre had begun offering its online Computer Based Training Module on Offshore Oil and Gas, so that the information can reach people throughout the various regions of Guyana.
“In an abundance of caution, the Centre transitioned to remote support over the month of March in order to ensure the safety of staff and Centre partners. Staff began pre-testing online versions of its seminars and courses in March and early April,” Dr. Natasha Gaskin-Peters, CLDB’s Deputy Director, told OilNOW.
She said the first online course, Workplace Assessment & Hazard Identification, which forms part of the HSSE programme, was conducted in April and has been followed by virtual Procurement and Offshore Oil and Gas courses.
“Meanwhile, we continued to provide support services for businesses via web meetings and telephone calls,” Dr. Gaskin-Peters said, adding that support services are available for businesses via web meetings and telephone calls.
“Virtual support for the Supplier Registration Portal (SRP) is only a phone call away. The procurement process continues via the SRP and questions are answered via phone, WhatsApp, email or a text,” the Deputy Director said.
Guyanese businesses have come to rely on the services of the Centre and fully utilize its Supplier Registration Portal (SRP) which is the go-to platform for suppliers and companies operating in the oil and gas sector. According to Dr. Gaskin-Peters, businesses have been approaching the online services with the same high level of enthusiasm.
“The response has been overwhelmingly positive so far with over 200 businesses continuing to engage the Centre for support on smart partnerships, HSSE as well as procurement matters,” she said.
Courses being offered online include Introduction to Procurement for Local Suppliers, Offshore Oil and Gas, Workplace Assessment & Hazard Identification, Job Safety Analysis and Incident Investigation.
“The online platforms have proven useful in delivering the courses and seminars to local suppliers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.
Given the massive uptake of these courses by participants, the Centre is examining the integration of online offerings combined with in-class sessions when COVID-19 restrictions ease.
Dr. Gaskin said the Centre believes that this blend of services will allow participants to benefit from the best aspects of in-person and online instruction.
Find out more about the Centre HERE