AUTHOR: Neil van Wyngaard, Head of EOH Coastal Academy
Most of us are aware of the problem with the education system in South Africa, but not many realize that there are thousands of jobs available that cannot be filled, due to the disparity of skills in relation to unemployed people in the market place. If we focus on the youth specifically the problem gets much worse. When we take a micro view, focussed specifically on the ICT sector, then the problem is astronomical. We are desperate to employ skilled people but such seems non-existent.
The Youth Unemployment Rate in South Africa has decreased from 55.90% in the second quarter of 2017 to 52.20% in the third quarter of the same year. . Furthermore, the Youth Unemployment Rate in the country averaged 51.95%from 2013 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 55.90% in the second quarter of 2017, and a record low of 48.80% in the fourth quarter of 2014.
EOH realized this some time ago and started an initiative called the “EOH Youth Job Creation Initiative”, with the intention of creating one-hundred-thousand jobs between 2012 and 2020. To date, EOH is about 80% there and on track to achieve this goal. With a staff compliment of approximately 14 000 people and reach into 36 African countries, the company is well positioned to make a significant impact on the issue of unemployment and will continue to do so past 2020 and into the future.
EOH Coastal has also contributed to job creation by running Microsoft Academies every six months for University graduates who are trained in the latest cloud technologies so that they can become fully employed and productive staff members of the organisation. Last year September EOH ran an Academy sponsored by Microsoft for 49 students with three different tracks (.NET, Data, BA\QA). In January 2018, the EOH Academy trained 71 students, many of which are on the verge of being employed.