What are discretionary grants?
9 Oct, 2018

Use discretionary grants to secure funding for your training from SETA.

Discretionary grants are paid out at the discretion of SETA management for skills development projects linked to scarce and critical skills. These grants are applicable when an employer addresses the sector’s scarce and critical skills through PIVOTAL programmes (Professional, Vocational, Technical and Academic learning programmes) that result in occupational qualifications or part qualifications on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).

PIVOTAL programmes include: Learnerships, Work Integrated Learning, Internships, Bursaries and Skills programmes. These can be for both employed and unemployed people.

The Skills Development Facilitator (SDF) should consult with the employer on the current scarce and critical skills identified by the SETA and see if those training needs are applicable to the company.

Submitting a discretionary grant funding application through the SETA is not a process all companies pursue after submitting the Workplace Skills Plan (WSP). Many companies simply submit the Workplace Skills Plan and receive the mandatory 20% of the Skills Development Levi (SDL) contribution. However, companies that contribute towards the skills development levy should realise the value in submitting the discretionary grant applications through the allocated SETA and access additional funding. The discretionary grant application is key to unlocking the additional potential 49.50% of the skills development levy available to the employer.

Learnerships for employed and unemployed people are a great way to increase your training spend, as you can count the salary of the learner as a training expenditure in B-BBEE. The current tax incentives also make it attractive for companies to pursue the learnership programmes.

Applications for Discretionary Grants must be approved before any training or other activity related to the skills development project can commence. Please contact the relevant SETA to find out if you qualify for funding.

NOSA, a level 2 B-BBEE contributor, can assist with the application and implementation of the following Learnerships and skills programmes:


  • General Education and Training Certificate – Warehousing and Transport: NQF 1
  • National Certificate in Freight Handling: NQF 3
  • National Certificate in Professional Driving: NQF 3
  • National Certificate in Road Transport: NQF 3
  • National Certificate in Business Administration: NQF 3
  • Certificate in New Venture Creation: NQF 2

Skills programmes:

  • Various professional driver skills
  • Warehousing
View Courses