Enthuse, educate, employ: New opportunities on the African IT market
A new initiative brings together companies and potential employees in Africa’s IT sector – while promoting inclusion.
Salifu Zeba, an IT graduate from Ghana, spent eight years applying for jobs – with no success. Shortly after gaining his bachelor’s degree he had gone blind. ‘There wasn’t a single firm willing to hire me in that condition,’ he said. But now he has had another chance. Zeba completed a six-month training course offered by the association Digital Skills Accelerator Africa e. V. (DSAA), which is supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. After the training course at the company AmaliTech, Zeba started a permanent job there. ‘For me, the project has changed everything,’ he says.
DSAA e.V. is a public-benefit association of digital firms that helps German and European companies to expand their activities in Africa. At the same time, the association assists in holding IT courses and training programmes for young people. Its services are designed in particular to help women and people with disabilities. DSAA receives support from GIZ as part of the special initiative Invest for Jobs on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
The conditions for growth in Africa’s IT sector are favourable: a young, computer-literate population, an available workforce, new sales markets and ever greater integration into global value chains. This is where the DSAA comes in – it trains specialists at its member companies.
The right training leads to the right job
DSAA’s member companies offer digital services to local and European customers, who come from sectors such as telecommunications and automotive. They identify the expertise needed, which is then covered in the training programmes. This means that talented young IT specialists receive specific training at the firms and after completing their programmes they have good chances of a permanent job.
Salifu Zeba and around 40 other young people completed the training programme at AmaliTech in mid-2020. Almost all of them are now in permanent employment. By the end of 2022, around 700 more graduates in Ghana are expected to complete their training at AmaliTech alone. Similar programmes are being run in Rwanda, Senegal and Morocco.