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I have a BEng electrical and wanted to find out if I'd be allowed to pursue my GCC factories



In previous posts, I managed to discuss:

The above content is "generic" and requires that you swift through the information to find out what really applies to your specific case.


So, I thought I should personalise the GCC factories' requirements.


In this post, I will talk about the specific GCC factories requirements for applicants with a bachelor's in electrical engineering in heavy current.

Electrical engineering bachelor's (BEng) degree in heavy current applicants also has it the easiest when it comes to the GCC factories acceptance requirements.


Here is the summary of their GCC factories requirements:


1. You must be at least 23 years of age


Ok, this one is simple, open your Identity Document (ID). Take the difference between your year of birth & the application year. If the difference is less than 23, you do not meet this requirement and should wait till you meet the minimum age requirement.


You will need to submit a certified copy of your ID or Passport to demonstrate that you meet this requirement. Make sure that the ID certification is not done longer than three months from submitting your application.


2. You must illustrate good conduct during the course of your career


Complete the letter of sobriety and get it signed by your employer.


Click here to download the GCC factories letter of sobriety and good conduct template required for the Government Certificate of Competency (GCC) factories application.

PRO-TIP: Click here for a step-by-step guide on how to complete the letter of sobriety and good conduct.


3. You must be in the position of a bachelors degree in electrical engineering heavy current


You have to be in the position of a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering heavy current recognised by the Commission of Examiners.


The bachelor's degree could be a BSc or BEng. And for the University of Johannesburg graduates, the BIng is also acceptable.


And if you have foreign qualifications, you need to get your qualification to be evaluated by SAQA and provide an indication of the South Africa equivalent qualification.


Click here to read more about how to get your qualification evaluated by SAQA.


4. You must at least have 2 years post-graduate experience in maintenance and operations of machinery (to the satisfaction of the Commission of Examiners)


You have to have worked in a maintenance and operation environment for at least 2 years after obtaining the degree.


This is were the experience record and letter of experience comes in. In these two documents, you need to clearly articulate the work YOU carried out that relates to maintenance and operation.


PRO-TIP: Click here for a step-by-step guide on how to complete the record of qualifications and experience.


So, what type of maintenance & operation work is considered appropriate? Examples of appropriate maintenance & operation work include:

  • Planning and execution of preventative maintenance activities e.g. vibration monitoring, oil monitoring, period plant visual inspections, ensuring machinery is operated within agreed parameters, etc.

  • Locating sources of problems by observing mechanical devices in operation, listening for problems, using precision measuring and testing instruments.

  • Planning and execution of removal of defective parts or machinery from the plant.

  • Carrying out quality control during the repair or manufacture of parts or machinery.

  • Developing parts or machinery specifications.

  • Ensuring compliance of part or machinery to specifications, standards, and regulations.

  • Control downtime by monitoring Mean Time Between Failures and taking corrective actions.

  • Ensure there are sufficient spares available for critical equipment.

  • Prepare mechanical maintenance reports.

  • Plan and execute plant or machinery overhauls.

  • Ensure that plant is operated safely and good housekeeping is maintained.

If you are in doubt that your experience is appropriate, I will advise that you submit your application to the Department of Labour Commission of Examiners. This way, you will receive a comprehensive response to your eligibility. It may take anywhere between 4 to 8 weeks to get a response from the Department of Employment and Labour.


So, what type of working environments may be considered as meeting the requirements of working in a factory environment? Here are a few examples:

  • Working in a power station e.g. Eskom generation, Sasol boiler plant, Tongaat Boiler plant, etc.

  • Working in a chemical processing plant e.g. Sasol, BASF, SAB, etc.

  • Working in a fabrication plant e.g. Arcelormittal, John Thompson Boilers, etc.

  • Working in an FMCG plant e.g. Unilever, Nestle, P&G, etc.

  • Working in an electrical distribution or transmission e.g. Eskom, cogeneration substations, etc.


Conclusion


Remember, you need to formally apply with the Department of Employment and Labour to be allowed to write the Government Certificate of Competency Factories exams.


The Government Certificate of Competency requirements for bachelor in electrical engineering heavy current candidates is much simpler.


You should not have much of a challenge to be accepted by the Commission of Examiners: Provided you have factory experience to the satisfaction of the Commission of Examiners.


The next step you should complete is to learn more about:

If you are in doubt that your experience is appropriate, I will advise that you submit your application to the Department of Employment and Labour Commission of Examiners. This way, you will receive a comprehensive response to your eligibility. It may take anywhere between 2 to 8 weeks to get an answer from the Department of Employment and Labour.

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