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Call For Expressions Of Interest For Partner Training Institutions

Date : 30 Jun 2020 - 17 Jul 2020
Venue : ECOWAS Commission,
Town : ABUJA
Country : Nigeria

Business Coaching & Management Training Sub-Component



1.     Background

The West Africa Competitiveness Programme (WACOMP) is a partnership initiative between the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the European Union (EU). It has a bearing on regional economic integration and highlights a commitment to the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and West Africa. The overall objective of the programme is to strengthen the competitiveness of West Africa and to enhance the countries’ integration into the regional and international trading system, including the newly established African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The WACOMP embraces the vision of the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa (IDDA III) and is also aligned to the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)’s mandate of fostering Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID).


As part of the agreed efforts to improve the performance and growth of enterprises in the ECOWAS countries and strengthen the capacity of business support organisations (BSO) in the field of entrepreneurship training under the WACOMP, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organisation (ITCILO) are collaborating to develop and deliver “a business training and coaching programme” to support BSOs working with entrepreneurs and start-ups at various stages of growth.


For the purposes of this action, it has been agreed to utilise an adaptation of the ILO’s “Start and Improve Your Business” (SIYB) Training programme. This supports small-scale entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses with the objective of creating more and better employment for women and men, particularly in developing economies. With an estimated outreach of 15 million trainees and a network of over 64.000 trainers, as well as a range of materials translated into over 40 languages, it is one of the world’s largest programmes in this field. The SIYB programme is a certified training programme where the candidates will undergo through a trainer development cycle, including taking part in formal trainings in a workshop setting as well as a practice period of conducting training, following which successful candidates are certified as SIYB trainers.


UNIDO and ITCILO are now coordinating and carrying out activities related to the identification and selection of a business support organizations (BSOs) in each of the countries and delivery of business coaching and management training to selected staff members of those institutions.



What is SIYB and how is it implemented in each country?


The SIYB programme is a system of inter-related training packages and supporting materials for small-scale entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses. It has been developed and coordinated by the ILO to assist BSOs to develop the skills required to implement, monitor, manage and finance the training programme, and sets up a sustainable training system at the national level, thus contributing to sustainable economic growth and employment generation.


The SIYB programme is structured in three separate training packages, which are designed to respond to the progressive stages of business development.

  • Generate Your Business Idea (GYB) is a two to three days training module intended for people who would like to start a business, and who, through the training, develop a concrete business idea
  • Start Your Business (SYB) is the second module and it is addressed to potential entrepreneurs who want to start a small business and already have a concrete business idea. The programme is a combination of training, fieldwork and after-training support, and helps participants assess their readiness to start a business and to prepare a business plan and evaluate its viability. SYB courses are usually delivered in five days.
  • Improve Your Business (IYB) is a seven-day training course to enable existing entrepreneurs to improve business management. It consists of six modules: (1) buying and stock control; (2) costing; (3) marketing; (4) people and productivity; (5) planning for your business; (6) record-keeping.


The SIYB Business Game, a practical simulation tool to help participants understand the realities of starting and running a business.


The implementation model

he SIYB programme looks for a sustainable and effective implementation model. The key actors of the SIYB programme are Master Trainers, Trainers and the local SIYB partner organizations through which they operate. In order to maintain quality standards of the SIYB programme, potential SIYB Trainers are chosen among trainers affiliated with a partner organization. Once selected, the candidates will undergo through a Trainer development cycle including taking part in a formal 10 days trainings followed by at least a training practice period where candidate trainers will have to conduct a ToE to assess their knowledge and training skills.


Master Trainers, who are selected from amongst Trainers and further trained and certified by the ILO, have a key role in planning, organizing and conducting Training of Trainers (ToT) programmes and follow-up measures, lead this whole process.

2.    Main objectives of this call for proposal


The purpose of this call is to identify and select business support organisations, (one per ECOWAS country plus Mauritania) which are interested in collaborating with the WACOMP programme to provide business training and coaching to potential entrepreneurs and SMEs in their country. For the purpose of this call for proposals, we consider a BSO to be any public or private organisation legally registered in an ECOWAS country or Mauritania and providing business support services, e.g. SME development agencies, employer’s organisations, business development services providers and training institutions.


3.    Main activities foreseen

After the selection of the BSOs, a comprehensive training and certification process will be carried out using the SIYB training package to ensure that the capacity to provide business coaching and training services is reinforced in each of their countries. This process is described as follows:

Participation (at least 1 person) in a face to face SIYB training of trainers (ToT) of around 2 weeks. This training will be held in two locations in the ECOWAS region with one being in English and one in French. The training will be delivered by an experienced Master Trainer under the coordination of the ITCILO. Date foreseen: August 2020. Roll out of the training process. Once the ToT is completed, the newly trained candidates will have the possibility to start on the ILO certification process to become certified SIYB trainers: this certification allows the candidates to: (i) join the ILO networks and communities of trainers; (ii) benefit from ILO technical resources and training materials and; (iii) update their knowledge in supporting women and men entrepreneurs through trainings of entrepreneurs and post-training delivery assistance; and (iv) have opportunity to use their skills to train and mentor women and men entrepreneurs. To be certified, candidates (who must have participated in the programme’s ToT) are required to deliver at least one full cycle of training of entrepreneurs to the full satisfaction of the SIYB programme. This training must involve between 18 to 25 participants from their country . Date foreseen: from August to November 2020.



Additionally, as part of the WACOMP programme, selected BSO may have the opportunity to participate in other activities related to the promotion of business development and entrepreneurship as for instance:

  • Organisation of entrepreneurship awareness activities in the country (Business plan competitions, networking activities, business exchanges programmes, etc.)
  • Participation in WACOMP programme activities, such us training workshops, study tours, coordination meetings, including outside their country.

Participation of selected BSOs institutions in the ToT will be financed by the WACOMP programme. BSOs are expected however to contribute  on the logistic expenses resulting from the roll out of the training of entrepreneurs ToE in their respective countries, ( such us venue facilities, trainings equipment’s or refreshments provided to participants).




4.    Eligibility criteria

Institutions willing to collaborate with the WACOMP programme must meet the following conditions:

  • Be a legal person whose headquarters are established in an ECOWAS Member State or Mauritania as defined in its legal statutes; and
  • Have as one of its principle activities the provision of business support services to small-scale entrepreneurs (including those operated by youth and women).


5.    Selection criteria


Eligible applications will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria and sub-criteria:


Mandate and experience in small and medium enterprise development 5
Institutional capacity (number of employees and geographic coverage, number of trainers, consultants and coaches and quality of consultants/trainers (education level, experience) 10
Main business services provided (training, coaching, financial services, etc.) and clients served (men/women, size, sectors) by these services. 15
Commitment to undertake at least a full cycle of ToE by end of September 2020 15
Capacity of co-financing ToE activities (venues and refreshments for trainees) 15
Experience in training and post-training support in business/entrepreneurship related topics to women and men led/owned MSMEs; 25
Experience in participatory training methodology and adult trainings, including potential entrepreneurs 15



6.    . How to apply


Interested candidates are requested to submit their application by email to

by 17th July  2020  midday UTC and mention: “WACOMP_BSO REINFORCEMENT PROGRAMME”.


Candidates institutions must use exclusively the annexed template documents:

  • Application form dully filled
  • A scanned copy of the Declaration duly signed and stamped
  • Submit at least three detailed SIYB trainers application forms and curricula vitae from nominated staff/ trainers/collaborators willing to participate in the SIYB training of trainers;

7.    Selection Process


ITC-ILO will be responsible for the selection of the institutions according to the criteria already described in this call for proposals. In accordance with the SIYB methodology, ILO Master Trainers will undertake the selection of candidates to take part in the training of trainers. The Master Trainers will utilise the selection criteria defined above. In order to assess applicant’s ranking against the different selection criteria, Master Trainers may need to request potential candidates to provide additional information in writing or by any other means, including through video or telephone calls.







To apply, find more information on:





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