Now members of the printing fraternity can start 2018 as officially registered printing professionals in much the same way as doctors, lawyers or accountants!
According to Printing SA CEO, Steve Thobela, registered printing professionals will now be entitled to write the letters SAIP [PO]; SAIP [PT]; SAIP [PM]; SAIP[PD] or SAIP [PDT] after their names depending on which of the five designations that is awarded to them i.e. Print Operator; Printing Technician; Print Manager; Print Director or Print Director Technical. “It’s actually far more than a few letters. It is recognition of an important status and will enhance your qualifications, your career, your self-esteem and your future job opportunities,” says Thobela.
All registered members will be presented with a certificate. There will be a nominal annual fee (ranging from R50 per annum for a student to R350 for the various categories) and members will be required to keep their knowledge up-to-date.
All Printing SA members and their staff are urged to apply as soon as possible and application forms can be found on the Printing SA Website. (https://www.pifsa.org/) Thobela says that formal registration serves as an important means of motivating both newcomers to the printing industry and existing employees to reach their full potential. “The very word professional implies that you are an expert.
Technical competence is essential in printing. This enables people to become experts in the skills and tools necessary to do their jobs. It also inspires them to always perform to the best of their ability.”
For printing, packaging, and signage companies, having print professionals that set high standards in their teams will be an excellent marketing tool. This also acts as a guide to potential customers when selecting service providers. “The opposite is also true. Poor demeanour or service that is less than professional can lead to an image problem for professionals and the companies that they represent. Negative images are hard to shake and a good name is well worth cultivating,” he points out.
Formal professional registration and the recognition of the South African Institute of Printing (SAIP) by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) is an important milestone for the printing sector. “The SAIP has been rebooted and is in the final throes of being recognized as a professional body. A new Council has been formed to guide this process, to set standards and to promote membership,” Thobela adds.
The newly reconstituted SAIP board, which is fully endorsed by Printing SA, includes Mike Bath as President, Thandi Moyo as Vice President, Mpho Ratlhogo as Treasurer and Thobela as chief executive officer. A number of reputable industry leaders and specialists with a wealth of experience are on the board and head up different subcommittees.