Africa: South Africa Needs a Creative Bag of Tricks to Solve Its Skills Shortage

opinion

Daily Maverick is fortunate to be growing. We have a policy of reinvesting our wins into delivering on our public service mandate and that means adding to our team whenever we can. We currently have about six vacancies that we're recruiting for ranging from designers and developers to account managers and publishers. And among the hundreds of CVs we get, we're struggling to fill these positions with the mavericks we need to write the next chapter of our story. In a country with 35% unemployment, we have the double whammy of a skills shortage that is yet another paradox from South Africa's box of tricks.

First published in the Daily Maverick 168 weekly newspaper.

At first glance, it would appear that the "brain drain" is the major culprit. According to data by Pew Research Centre, 900,000 people born in South Africa were living abroad in 2017. That number would easily surpass the one-million mark the next time the research is conducted. At the same time, more than four million people have moved to South Africa but it's clear that we're not replenishing at the same skills level as those who have left.

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