Youth unemployment is one of the ticking time-bombs facing Afrika. Take for instance two of the continent’s larger economies, Nigeria and South Africa, both are sitting with youth unemployment rates of well over 30%.
There seems to be no clear or promising solution in the short to medium term either by Afrikan governments. Coupled with poorly performing economies, in the cases of South and Nigeria, the problem of youth unemployment should be a priority.
The problem of youth unemployment is also exacerbated by millions of students graduating annually from secondary schools and tertiary institutions with skills that are not suitable for them to be employed.
“In 2014, my co-founder (Kehinde Ayanleye) and I found it difficult to get our first job out of college in Nigeria, we discovered 12,000,000 Africans face this problem every year. So, we decided to solve this problem for ourselves by creating a listing site for internships and entry level jobs and this has evolved over the last 29 months to be the largest marketplace for students and recent graduates in Nigeria,” said Taiwo Ayanleye, Co-founder at Stutern.com, as he explained to iAfrikan how they are looking at solving the youth unemployment problem in Afrika.
Ayanleye added that they are also looking to expand the service beyond Nigeria. At the moment Stutern.com has candidates from other Afrikan countries (other than Nigeria) like Ghana, Kenya, and the Benin Republic. They are looking to further expand across Afrika as the problem of youth unemployment is one that affects most countries on the continent.
According to Kelvin Balogun, President of Coca-Cola for Central, East, and West Africa, “Almost half of the 10 million graduates churned out of the over 668 universities in Africa yearly do not get a job,”. This statement is also supported by data from the World Bank.
Stutern.com believe with their platform, they have found a key to the solution of youth unemployment in Afrika. Stutern.com works with the academic institutions and companies to provide job and learning opportunities to both students and recent graduates.
How it works is that students and recent graduates go to Stutern.com and register. Once they have created their profile, they can then apply for jobs while taking courses to improve job-related skills.
For employers, they can either search and shortlist (based on skills and qualifications) candidates that have been vetted or they can post the job positions and requirements which they wish to hire students and graduates for. Thereafter, selected candidates are further shortlisted for interviews by the employers.
To handle a large number of requests that they receive, Stutern.com allows employers to shortlist and manage their interviews right from their platform by picking a date and time for interviews for shortlisted candidates. They also have dedicated account managers who are on standby to assist employers through the whole process. A nice touch to the whole platform is that candidates are provided with feedback on their applications, which helps should they not be successful and assists them with notes on what they need to improve on. “Overall, our motivation for starting Stutern.com is to power workplaces with talented candidates thereby reducing the prevailing unemployment problem in Afrika. It is also important to state that employers find it really difficult to hire the right candidates in a timely fashion,” said Ayanleye.
At first sight, you might dismiss this and say it is “just another job listings website“, but it isn’t and the proof is in some of the companies that Stutern.com has as clients. These include Uber, Konga, Terragon Group and Flutterwave. Added to these companies, over the last 29 months Stutern.com report that they have been able to place over 1,000 candidates into companies for internships and entry-level jobs, an indication that they are on the right path.
“Our ultimate goal is to shape Afrika’s future through the opportunities we provide for our young population starting from Nigeria by aiding graduates to kickstart their careers in their chosen fields and spreading to other Afrikan countries.”
“60% of the continent’s population is aged 24 years old or less, and they are the future of Afrika. It has been a daunting experience, but also a rewarding one and will continue to be more so as we see the best Africa has to offer on a global spectrum of young and talented professionals,” concluded Ayanleye.
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