Junior Achievement (JA) Africa, in partnership with Google’s charitable arm, Google.org, and Z Zurich Foundation, have launched JA Career Connect – a new cloud-based platform designed to connect young African talent with employment opportunities across the globe.
In line with their joint commitment to nurturing the future leaders of the continent, the platform not only facilitates access to global job opportunities and internships but also embodies JA Africa’s shared vision of empowering the next generation of African leaders.
JA Career Connect has an existing pool of talent comprised of JA Africa’s alumni from its skills development programme that equips young people with the skills needed for the working world, propelling them towards a path of professional success.
“Our new platform aims to positively impact the livelihoods of our youth by addressing the pressing issue of unemployment across the continent. By making employment opportunities readily accessible for skilled candidates, we are paving the way for a brighter future and greater opportunities for the next generation of African leaders,” says Simi Nwogugu, CEO at JA Africa.
Approximately 11 million young people across Africa enter the workforce annually, competing for approximately three million jobs. JA Career Connect aims to assist recruiters and potential employers to address this crisis through a range of unique features including:
- Smart candidate recommendations: Users can effortlessly discover potential candidates with an intelligent recommendation system that ensures a seamless and efficient candidate search process.
- Comprehensive candidate profiles: Recruiters and hiring managers can access detailed candidate profiles, providing insights into academic achievements, skills and work experience, allowing them to make informed hiring decisions.
- Collaborative recruitment: HR professionals can foster better team collaboration by inviting members to join their accounts, thus encouraging a hiring process where everyone is on the same page.
- Streamlined recruitment pipelines: Recruiters and hiring managers can simplify the hiring process with customisable recruitment pipelines. The platform allows users to create, edit and manage the entire recruitment journey within JA Career Connect.
“Google is committed to helping improve the lives of as many people as possible through our various products and partnerships. JA Career Connect is a great initiative that holds the power to transform the trajectory of Africa’s youth. By leveraging the power of technology, it not only addresses unemployment but ignites hope and potential. This platform has the potential to reshape the continent’s future,” says Google South Africa Country Director, Alistair Mokoena.
Youth unemployment continues to be a critical issue across the continent due to a weak labour market, sluggish economic growth, and various other contributing factors. This challenging landscape often leads even qualified graduates to struggle in their job search, with the average young person taking up to six years to secure their first employment.
However, platforms like JA Career Connect play a pivotal role in significantly reducing this job-seeking period by linking JA alumni with the essential opportunities to launch their careers. Impressively, over 25% of JA alumni possess expertise in data analysis, computer programming, and cybersecurity, while an impressive 90% of them exhibit proficiency in networking, critical thinking, idea generation, and problem-solving.
“JA Career Connect represents a beacon of hope in a landscape challenged by youth unemployment. It doesn’t just connect talent; it connects dreams, aspirations and the promise of a brighter future for Africa’s youth. We are proud to support an initiative that has the potential to change countless lives,” says Gregory Renand, Head of Foundation at Z Zurich Foundation.
By connecting Africa’s unemployed youth to a network of global opportunities, organisations have the potential to upskill and empower the continent’s burgeoning youth population, putting them in a position to not only transform their own lives but also those of their families and the societies in which they live.
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